Making the most of a day while in North Wales

It had been a mixed bag of weather during the week in Wales. Arriving on the first Friday night the Android weather apps predicted a week of cloud and rain ahead! However it turned out better than expected and as we approached the end of the week the Friday forecast promised a cracking day with clear skies morning and night and plenty of sun during the day.

With plans prepared, we therefore headed off early on Friday morning on the hour plus drive to Barmouth, to the Panorama Walk location to get a view up the estuary towards the mountains for the sunrise. It was a perfect location to see the changing colours as the sun slowly lit up the different mountain slopes, eventually lighting up the spot where I was soaking in the view.

Next stop was another approximate hour drive to Llyn Crafnant. A lake nestled in the mountains north of Betws-y-coed. The plan was to get some reflection photos - a location recommended in a book on photographic locations in North Wales. From the weather apps, it appeared the calmest point of the morning was going to be around 10.00am. However we arrived later than expected at the north end of the lake to find the surface rippling in the gentle breeze, with very little reflection. With a tinge of disappointment I drove to the end of the lake and turned around to come back, considering whether to stop and get some 'record' shots anyway. As we approached the north end of the lake again, the wind suddenly died down leaving a mirror-like reflection across the surface of water - perfect conditions to get the photos I had originally planned! Incredible.

Even Willow got in on the action, managing to make her presence known on a photo I took from the mobile phone

It was time to move on and get some lunch - stopping at Llanrwst for an excellent meal at Tu Hwnt lr Bont Tearooms, before heading back past Betws-y-coed to stop off at Fairy Glen for some photos. I would love to revisit this location with the sun directly above the glen and misty conditions!

Time was moving on, and with sunset photos in my mind, we decided to head back to Barmouth (a west coast town) to capture the setting sun from the beach. It was turning out to be a classic day! And the sunset didn't disappoint either.

It also provided an opportunity to have a go at some abstract type shots of the sunset colours as the light rapidly faded.

Normally this would be the time for packing up the camera and heading home, but a local resident mentioned about a firework display that was to take place on the beach at 7pm, so we delayed our return to our accommodation and out came the camera again! 

What a day it had been, but it wasn't over yet! Arriving back at our accommodation, the night sky was a sight to behold. Even with the moon out, the amount of visible stars was amazing, and I couldn't resist the opportunity to walk up to the nearby fields to capture a selection of night photos, particularly after the moon had set and the sky was totally dark! An amazing spectacle.

It had truly been a special day. So much crammed into 18 hours, and so thankful for the weather! A difficult day to beat!