It’s taken some months for this article to finally make it to the pages of the website. Like many others, I am coming to terms with the fact that I am running down (not up) mountains, stranger still I am still able to drag along my X100F for the ride. Slieve Donard is Northern Ireland’s tallest mountain and it’s the default challenge for those on the trails.
It’s a reasonably frequent outing and we have been bettering our times of late. The mountain is how we start every year, 5am at the top of Donard watching the sunrise….. normally, as they say here ‘it’s totally baltic’.
Northern Ireland has a remarkable weather system. On this occasion we were experiencing torrential rain twenty miles from the mountain, during the entire journey I was concocting a range of excuses why we shouldn’t venture out, we still did. One of the wettest days in August turned out to be a stunning afternoon on the mountain and there wasn’t even a single hint that it had ever been raining.
The above photo is the view down through Donard forest to the town of Newcastle, you can see the rain in the background.
Cloud cover was low and this photo was captured on one of the steepest sections climbing Slieve Donard. Having a camera with me allowed for a handy opportunity to grab a break from a fast paced ascent to the Mourne Wall.
The Fujifilm X100F panorama mode is a firm favourite and it managed to capture the contrast of the sky without any banding. You can see the Mourne wall longing along the vertical, right third of the image.
Heading into the mountains on sunny days makes sense on one level but it never really delivers when it comes to photography. I love the drama of the clouds just lifting in the evening light. It is a rare day to see such dramatic weather and not be reaching for the Rab waterproofs.