Magical panoramic view as far as the eye can see over Lower- and Upper Lough Bray in the Wicklow Mountains.
Nikon D7100, Sigma 8-16mm f/4.5-5.6 DC HSM – ISO 100, f/9, 1/500 sec; 8mm
Does this bridge look familiar? It certainly did to me the first time I saw the Ponte 25 de Abril… it appears to be strikingly similar to the world famous Golden Gate Bridge!
Well, as it turns out these two bridges have things in common: they are red in colour and belong to the category of the suspension bridges.
However, even though a taxi driver told me a tale of the same architect who constructed both bridges, the truth is Lisbon’s Ponte 25 de Abril has been built by the American Bridge Company – the same company that built the other massive bridge connecting the Bay Area: the San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge.
That doesn’t make the Ponte 25 de Abril less imposing. As the longest suspension bridge in Europe this is quite an enormous construction, connecting Lisbon with Almada on the other side of the Tagus River.
Balmy temperatures, stunning architecture and grand views – that all is Lisbon. What Lisbon is also: sore calf muscles!
The one who wants to enjoy the rich beauty of Portugal’s capital has to be prepared to go the extra mile… or two for that matter…. up some brutally steep hills. The reward is even greater, though, for those who make the effort.
My legs were hurting, that’s for sure. Yet, while not inspired photography wise during my few days, (Lisbon offers enough subjects to photograph – I was simply not in “the zone” and had other things on my mind) it still felt great to climb around the city and get surprised about what’s next to be explored beyond the next wall of steep stairs.
The richest of rewards to reap is – of course – a delightful sunset; the golden sunlight glowing above the rooftops of Lisbon’s historical city, illuminating the monumental Lisbon castle
This photo – one of the few I took during the week – was taken atop of the Miradouro da Graça – quite clearly the prime viewpoint of Lisbon. A grand view offering the full scale of the hilly Portuguese capital.
Using the Telezoom Tamron 70-200mm turned out a perfect option opposed to a wide angle. A handful of vertical frames shot at 70mm stitched together in post worked best for me.
A sunset in the Wicklow Mountains shines the most delightful light on this magnificent landscape. Regardless how often I’ve been here, it never stops to take my breath away. Having this half an hour off my home is a privilege.
Wild encounter with some curious deer in the Wicklow Mountains
Sometimes you get rewarded late…. so late that all gear was stowed away as I was on the return leg after a fine, yet far from spectacular – at least from a photography point of view – climb up to Turlough Hill in the afternoon.
While a beautiful day it was, the sun shining sky high throughout, the oh so often elusive yellow ball did vanish behind a tick layer of clouds as I prepared for my carefully selected sunset shot. One of those days, it seemed. Nothing you can do about it.
As I set sail before darkness hit, all of a sudden the world around me turns into a vibrant orange, red and purple wonderland. Gone is the layer of clouds, free is the sun, minutes away from dropping behind the back of Turlough Hill.
A sunset photo at last!
Storm Emma, or delightfully called “Beast of the East” makes life tough for everyone here in Ireland at the moment. Snow as high as a full metre – those who braved the storm had a price to pay: the white powder in the face, numb fingers and every little step one that had to be fought for.
Incredible to think that this is still Ireland. Incredible even more so to think it’s the second of March. Spring around the corner…. Really?
A couple of surreal days – snow in Ireland…. a lot of snow, in fact! So much so that the population is ordered to stay indoors. The snow storm is battering my home for a solid two days now – getting to a level where I wonder: should I be worried?
Well, today, I ignored the warnings and went out for a walk with the cam in the hand exploring my local area…. running right into the midst of the storm! There were moments where you couldn’t see what was in front of view.
The white powder battering anything that’s in the way, be it houses, trees or human faces!
The Grand canal is frozen. The poor swan, lonely and waiting for better times, can only sit patiently on the ice in the hope of someone throwing him some bread. Hopefully – so the meteorologists say – the worst is over after the weekend.
After passing the site multiple times in recent weeks (and didn’t find it instantly when actively looking for it either), today there was no stopping getting to the top of the Hill of Allen!
To find the site, even more so to find parking, is an adventure in itself. Don’t expect signs, and don’t expect the small car park that exists in theory to be open either – the site is officially not open for public any more as quarrying takes place at the other side of the hill.
It it still possible to go up, though. A small, muddy way leads all the way to the hill. A shame the county council has effectively abandoned this site of historical importance as it could be a real gem – if protected and cared for.
At the top of the tower has been a glass canopy erected a few years ago. Unfortunately this one has been smashed and glass is scattered as wide as the eye can see.
If you squeeze through the open frames you’ll be rewarded with the most magnificent view over county Kildare, the Curragh all the way up to the Wicklow Mountains in the distance, nonetheless. It’s well worth the effort.