Virtual Photo Tour: Nostalgia Edition: Part 2 – Snowdonia

For the final leg of our nostalgia edition photo tour I want to visit Snowdonia.

Sarah Edmonds Illustration of Snowdonia National Park

I lived there at the end of the 80’s. Photography was still all film and way out of my financial reach. I lived for a year in a mountain hamlet, taking the bus into Bangor every morning. The view from my living room window was something like the image below. It could be quite spectacular. I remember that the mist used to really swirl around the mountains that you could see in the distance. On days when it was sunny the mountains would also catch the light in an amazing way.

Approximate view from my living room window courtesy of google maps

I didn’t have a car at the time and so even though I lived on the edge of the national park things were tantalizingly out of my reach. Because of that I feel like I missed out on a lot.

So where to go on our tour? My first introduction to Snowdonia was a school trip to Betws-y-Coed so I would like to start there.

https://www.gonorthwales.co.uk/explore/betws-y-coed

With school we went to Betws-y-Coed on a science field trip and stayed at the Draper Field Centre. Betws attracted British artists when they couldn’t travel because of the Napoleonic War and eventually in the Victorian era it became the site of the first British Artist colony. I’m keen to visit the Fairy Glen shown in the image below although I understand this has become a bit of a tourist trap.

Fairy Glen, Betws-y-Coed

After a couple of days to explore the area around Betws – including the gwydir forest park and swallow falls – lets move on to the area around Llyn Ogwen.

The Llyn Ogwen area is what we might think of as a subject rich environment. Here there’s Llyn Ogwen, Ogwen falls, Llyn Idwal and Glydar Fach (if your up for a climb).

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/carneddau-and-glyderau/trails/llyn-ogwen-circular-walk

There’s a really great walk around Llyn Idwal and across a mountain range called the Devil’s Kitchen if you’re up for it. I probably would’t be but would rather get in a good spot to take photos of the mountains.

View of Devils Kitchen across Llyn Idwal

One more stop before we head for Bangor and that is to see the ‘Lonely Tree’ at Lynn Padarn Country Park. Let’s have a quick look at the map to orient ourselves.

I was amazed when I saw images of this tree in Llyn Padarn. I thought that I would have to go to New Zealand to see a tree like this. Let’s hope that we have great light when we visit Llyn Padarn!

Robert Rhead: Llyn Padarn, Lonely Tree

Finally let’s finish up in Bangor and then head back to Yorkshire.

Here’s the map of our Wales trip. We’ve only scratched the surface and didn’t even visit Snowdon! Lots more to do when we visit next time!

Virtual Photo Tour: Nostalgia Edition: Part 1 – Yorkshire

Paul Hart: Windy Corner, 2013

Like many of you I’m starting to get itchy feet. 2020 was the first year that I did not get in a plane in a long while and 2021 has started off looking like travel will be limited this year too.

That got me thinking about all the places I would like to visit. So this is the first of what I’m calling ‘virtual photo tours’ where we explore some of the places I want to visit and highlight who might be good companions for our trips. For our first photo tour I wanted to go ‘home’ and explore with a camera places from my past.

First up Yorkshire. I grew up in a very flat part of Yorkshire, on the border of the old East and West Ridings. Paul Hart’s images of The Fens, such as the one above, could have been taken in this area rather than in East Anglia. They really remind me of foggy Sunday mornings driving around to play football against the neighboring village team.

The river Don flows through the village I grew up in. Growing up I heard stories of epic flooding in the local area. Those times seem to have returned as you can see in the footage below.

Let’s head out to the Yorkshire Coast next and take a drive up from Filey to Robin Hood’s Bay, Whitby and finally to Staithes.

I spent all my summers at the beach in Filey and I’m looking forward to returning with my camera soon. My uncles used to keep their fishing boat just to the left of the little hut in the image below.

The Lifeboat Station Project: 12×10 inch Clear Glass Ambrotype by Jack Lowe The view from Filey RNLI Lifeboat Station, 11th June 2017

As places do, Filey has changed a lot since I was a kid. The fishing boats on cobble landing are essentially gone and there is talk of closing the lifeboat station. What a travesty.

View of Filey Bay

The Brigg – the land that juts out into the sea in the image above has lots of possibilities. You have to be careful though – the tide comes in quick and it’s easy to get cut off.

After a stop in Robin Hood’s Bay lets stop at Whitby. I’ve only been to Whitby a few times. It’s famous as the place where Captain Cook learned seamanship and connections with Bram Stoker’s Dracula. It’s also the last stop on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. When I think of Whitby I think of the breakwaters that guard the entrance of the harbor shown in the image below.

https://www.discoveryorkshirecoast.com/whitby

Adam Karnacz of First Man Photography gives a great tour of the sights of Whitby in his video below and also a tutorial of long exposure seascapes too!

On to Staithes! I’ve never been to Staithes and only know it from the Joe Cornish images of the harbor below. I can wait to visit, especially at different times of year. What a difference a coating of snow makes!

Joe Cornish: Staithes
Joe Cornish: Staithes

Listen to Joe talk about the image at the top and how he thinks about preparing the image for print in the video below.

Perhaps we could get Joe Cornish or Adam Karnacz to join us for our coastal adventure or better yet the two of them together they clearly have great chemistry in the video below.

For the final leg of our nostalgia edition photo tour I want to visit Snowdonia. More about that next time.