For the May 24th weekend, Sandi and I decided to meet up with my cousin and fellow photographers Tom and Tara in Algonquin park. I’ve only been to the park once before, Sandi camped there often as a child. Tom and Tara, as members of Friends of Algonquin Park, have been there many times. Tom graciously offered to be our guide.
We arrived Friday afternoon and met our friends at the East Gate Motel, which provides basic but clean and friendly accommodations. After settling in and getting a bite to eat we headed into the park for the first night of shooting – and to experience first hand just how bad the black flies are this year. In a word, Stupid.
Rock lake was our first destination. The view and sunset was really nice but paled compared to what was to come. Saturday morning I met Tom at 5 am when we headed into the park for sunrise, and moose. We were not disappointed. Saturday evening was the big show – I’ll add the name of the lake later as I don’t remember which one it was. We set up around 7:30 and got a few nice shots. We didn’t actually expect much but then the sky exploded with colour. As if on cue, the bugs in the distance increased the intensity of their singing as if synchronized with the drama taking place in the sky. I found it all very exciting. The bugs were at their worst that night but the images we were capturing more than made up for the annoyance.
Sunday was another 5 am start this time we were greeted by cooler temperatures, fewer flies and mist on the water. Sunset that night was nice but not nearly as good as on Saturday. I’m not used to those hours and that much walking so it wasn’t a surprise that I was really quite spent by Sunday evening and not able to greet a third sunrise on Monday. I’m not complaining though, I filled two 4 GB cards. I have lots to work with over the next week.
While we were there, Tom talked about running workshops for people interested in landscape photography but not familiar with Algonquin Park or perhaps the proper techniques. From my own experience, he should definitely carry through on those plans. Anyone signing up is sure not to be disappointed.
Some examples of Tom’s work is here.