Just back from a great trip down the Great Ocean Road with 10 of the nicest, keenest folk you could imagine. We had some amazing weather with waves crashing over the 45meter cliffs of Loch Ard Gorge, some fabulous light and the rain holding off long enough for us all to get out and get some great images.
On the first evening we had dinner and saw a short slide show of what we were hoping to achieve over the weekend before an early night, well the earliest for the weekend anyway. The following days the sun didn't greet us for our sunrise shoot but the weather did with some of the most amazing scenes I have ever witnessed along that stretch of coast. A king tide, with 10m swells and onshore gusts up to 30 knots lead to some fabulous images of the power of the sea. The sun did manage to find its way through the clouds on occasion to light up the cliffs, setting them off against the dark clouds in the background. We had planned to visit Gibson's Steps in the evening but the king tide put paid to that so we bustled with the crowd at the 12 Apostles. No glorious sunsets but we came to see the might of the Southern Ocean and we got what we paid for. Not at all surprising that there are fewer Apostles after seeing what that ocean can do.
The third day found us once again exploring Loch Ard Gorge, one of the most spectacular sections of the Great Ocean Road before heading off for lunch and a trip to the Otway Ranges and try our luck shooting waterfalls. They are called Rain Forests for a reason but after huddling in the car park for five minutes sheltering from the rain we trooped off down to Hopetoun Falls where some of the best images of the trip were found. We again battled the elements but this time we had the added advantage of fresh water spray over the salt spray of the previous sessions. Sunday evening was finished up with some fantastic pizza and red wine huddled around the laptops working on the days images with the talent of the group really coming to the fore.
Still not photographed out the group payed one last visit to the coast on the Monday morning to find the seas eerily calm after the previous few days. We visited a couple more sites along the coast heading back, late, to the apartments because we just couldn't get enough. After a quick edit we grabbed lunch and went back to for a slide show of the participants images and I have to say I was amazed with the quality of the work produced over the weekend. I would be happy to have many of the images shown in my collection. Peoples skills came on in so many ways over the weekend from technical, camera and computer craft to seeing and composing images. And the end result was some amazing photography.
Overall the trip was a great success and I hope everyone had as much fun as I did. The weather wasn't quite what we expected but I never once heard anyone complaining about it and everyone came home with fantastic images, some great memories and some new friends.