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Morning mist surrounding Widecombe in the Moor Church

My favourite Dartmoor Sunrise yet.

I do love it when a plan comes together. The forecast for this morning was a foggy one. After spending the night camped out in sub zero temperatures on Tuesday but with no photos to bring home, I was keen to get back out. The wind forecast was low this morning so my initial plan was to head down to Parke and capitalise on the frost.

When I got out to the car however, I looked up and noticed stars rather than fog so plans had to change. Umming and ahhing between Rippon Tor or Chinkwell Tor I decided on the latter because it had better potential for different conditions. In the end I had almost every condition thrown at me which meant I was running around like a headless chicken.

Chinkwell Tor Cairns at sunrise

Fuji X-E2 | Samyang 12mm F2. 1.5 Sec, F11, ISO 200

Pre dawn frost at Chinkwell Tor

I arrived early, allowing plenty of time for driving on the icy roads. The stomp up the steep side of Bell Tor quickly deterred the chilly feeling so I sat an admired the changing colours with a cup of coffee. I have shot this composition before but never in clear conditions.

Hound Tor surrounded by mist

Fuji X-E2 | 35mm F2. 1/30 Sec, F8, ISO 200

As the mist rolled in around Dartmoor

The fog finally did make an appearance and started to completely envelope Chinkwell Tor. Luckily I had already got a few images of the church down in Widecomb in the Moor. I was on the verge of packing up and heading down to Parke like I had planned when thankfully, the fog started to break. Everything above 400m was sticking out of a giant inversion!

Haytor at Sunrise with a cloud inversion

Fuji X-E2 | 55-200mm F3.5-4.8. 1/320 Sec, F9, ISO 200

It got better and better.. Giant Dartmoor cloud inversion

I was partly in awe and partly trying to capture everything happening around me. This view of Haytor and Saddle Tor was taken with the brilliant Fuji 55-200mm lens. The optical stabilisation allows for fast paced hand held shots which is really important when this much was going on.

Bell Tor and Bonehill Rocks shrouded in mist at Sunrise

Fuji X-E2 | 35mm F2. 1/125 Sec, F13, ISO 200

The climax, golden side light on Bonehill Rocks

The crescendo of the morning ended with a run back up and over Chinkwell Tor. As I started to move around with the zoom lens I noticed the mist shrouding Bonehill Rocks. Typically I had left my bag with my other lenses in on the other side of the tor so I sprinted back up and over grabbed everything and then ran back down to this view point.

For every good day comes 10 failures

Unfortunately landscape photography is a practice where we cannot control the elements. With portrait and commercial photography it is possible to adapt to the changing conditions but that isn’t so when you’re out in nature. It’s all part of the chase. Luckily today, everything fell in to place.

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