Nuns Cross Farm, Dartmoor, Devon, England by Chris Marshall

Picture Story

Snowfall in the Southwest of England is a rarity because the weather is generally very mild. It’s known for its Atlantic rainstorms followed by beautiful sunshine. When the snow arrives, crowds of locals flock to the moors with their families to have fun or hikers set off on a walk.

On the morning of New Years Eve 2020 I experienced the most amazing weather conditions as I walked from Princetown across the moorland. I had already visited two other locations starting at first light and witnessing the most spectacular orange sunrise above a white landscape. My final plan was to photograph Nuns Cross Farm in the snow for the first time. The scenery was spectacular with clear blue skies and excellent visibility but ahead of the path was a wall of soft mist. I was surprised not to see anyone else with it being such a popular circular Dartmoor route.

It wasn’t long before the dense fog cleared revealing a band of ethereal mist above the old farm building about four hundred metres away. I quickly set up my camera and tripod and took a photo of the evocative wintery scene before the mist drifted by. My 24-70mm lens didn’t have the reach to feature the farm in the frame so I started to run downwards to get closer aware that it I could slip and fall. The layer of mist was moving quickly from left to right so I had to find an attractive composition swiftly. The fresh laden snow looked simply wonderful especially on Siward’s Cross in the foreground. I positioned the cross in between the building and one of the Fir trees. I honestly did not expect to photograph such wonderful wintery scenery and conditions that morning so it was well worth the early start.

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