Hay Up! Sunrise at Hay Tor

Bruce Little / diary, landscape / / 0 Comments / Like this
Sunrise at Hay Tor, Dartmoor, on a rainy autumn morning

Hay Tor was the last place I was expecting to end up on this particular morning. Well, I guess that’s not strictly true as, Dartmoor-wise, Fur Tor would have been a little less likely, but “boring old Hay Tor” wasn’t high on my list of destinations.

It’s been a slow autumn for my photography. I’ve had little chance to take time off work when the weather has looked promising so I’m depending on weekends to get out and about, and the conditions haven’t favoured me.

Still, a Saturday morning a couple of weekends ago looked OK. A front had passed during the evening and overnight; showers and strong winds followed in the morning and I hoped to get up to the moor and get some early morning rainbow action.

As I drove past Exeter and down the A38, I kept glancing moorwards. The convective cells were rather large and most of the sky was obscured. More in hope than expectation I plodded on. After all, going back to a warm bed, or walking over exposed uplands in driving rain – which would you choose?

I was going to head on towards Widecombe and park up in the general vicinity of Top Tor, Pil Tor, maybe Bonehill. However, passing the higher Hay Tor car park, I recognised fellow tog, Richard Fox, parked up waiting for some light. So I stopped and said hello.

We waited in our cars, solitary optimists, and the rain eventually stopped. Getting out we took the short hike up to the tor and had an opportunity for a short natter. There was a break in the clouds and we might get lucky.

It really was a “smash and grab” visit. There were 5, maybe 10, minutes when it was worthwhile making some exposures and I made some hasty compositions. Bracketing wildly I thought that this might be a use for my newly acquired LR/Enfuse plug in and the resulting image was created with it. I must say, I’m not a great fan of Lightroom’s Merge to HDR capabilities as it seems to include too many noisy shadows for my liking. LR/Enfuse made a far better effort of things from this very limited experience. I’m looking forward to using it more in the future.

Anyway, 5 or 10 minutes later we were heading back down to the cars again. A short natter on the way down, and then homewards for Saturday morning coffee and crumpets.

I’m writing this on another rainy Saturday morning, hoping that the weather will perk up sometime soon …

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