The winter is dragging on and we seem to be getting storm after storm. It has been raining almost continuously for 24 hours now. I thought it would be interesting to see Boranup forest in the rain, and it was worth the trip. The light was very good – normally it is very contrasty in the forest, but in the rain it is a soft even light.
For those who are not familiar with the South West, Boranup is a re-growth Karri Forest that was originally logged in the 1920’s. All the trees are roughly the same size, and as they have been competing with each other for sunlight they have all grown straight and tall. It is the westernmost stand of Karri in Western Australia.
You can’t go to Pemberton and not take a photo of a Karri Tree. These are the third largest trees in the world behind the Californian redwood and the Victorian Mountain Ash (according to the tour guide). The oldest ones are around 300 years old. You can tell the oldest ones (apart from size) because the crowns have collapsed. Many of these old trees have this cavity in the base – good habitat for something! Around Pemberton these old trees seem to have this bright green moss around the base. In this shot the fern gives some appreciation of the size – this tree would have been over 2m in diameter.
I have just spent a couple of days camping at Pemberton. I have only looked at a few of the photos and will post more in the next few days. Last night I was at Moon’s Crossing about 20km east of Pemberton. It was a beautiful clear night (also cold). I took this shot of the tree next to my car about 8:15 PM. There was no light pollution – the only thing between me and the nearest town was Karri trees. The light on the trunk of the tree was from the interior light in my car. (The tree is probably 50 meters tall).
This tree came down in the recent storm, and had to be cut off the road. I liked the pattern of the log that was left behind.
While we were in the forest the cloud cover was being burnt off and the light became very harsh. However this shot just scraped in. It seems to break a few rules (the eye is lead to several different places for example). However I think it works and it provides a different perspective of the karri tree in the centre. I originally suggested to Mark that we try Boranup because with the cherry picker we could avoid the “looking up” shots of the giant trees and this worked well.
This was taken about half way along the Boranup Drive. It is worth taking this deviation off Caves Road if you are in the area.
This area was logged around 1920, and this is all regrowth Karri forest. As the trees are roughly the same age they competed with each other for light and as a result are all very tall and straight. When driving south along Caves Road, south of Margaret River you come around a bend and are confronted with the sight of these trees. I am surprised there are not more accidents here as cars tend to pull up anywhere to look at the trees.
I found this difficult to photograph, largely because every time I left Dunsborough in sunny weather to photograph the forest, it was raining by the time I arrived! However the good news for photographers is that you don’t need to be here at sunrise to get the best photos. At that time the sun is still below the canopy. The best time is an hour or so before sunset or after sunrise, so you get the sidelight.