The Ironman series held a heat at Smiths beach today. The conditions were rough and windy. They had set up all the barriers last night, but they got washed away. This morning they delayed the start 2 hours to let the conditions ease. These guys are tough – swim, surf skis, paddle a surfboard, and then repeat until I lost count of how many laps they did! The surf skis were the hardest part – they got tossed around in the breaking surf. Very tough on those who were leading, and then their ski got washed back to shore.
This series is extremely well organised (and funded). There were three helicopters and 6 jetskis, two rubber duckies and plenty of lifeguards around all vantage points checking on all competitors.
Although there was a lot of cloud, and it wasn’t very warm, the sun came out (partially) towards the end of the day. I was hoping for a good sunset, but it wasn’t quite there. However there were still a lot of people surfing at Smiths Beach (Supertubes), and they had to cross the river to get home – its not deep, but the water creates interesting patterns. I had to cross the river to get these photographs, and left my shoes on the beach. A large wave came and washed them into the river. I had to rescue them before they went out to sea! Wherever a river is flowing into the sea there is always interesting water patterns, shapes and colours and this was no exception.
The other night I went down to Smith’s Beach to catch the sunset. A young girl, complete with walkman, arrived about the same time as I did, and went off towards Torpedo rocks for a run. She was gone for quite a while and returned Later. At just the right place she stopped, and began doing stretching exercises.
I have cropped the bottom of image since I originally posted it. I think this version conveys the feeling of the wide expanse of Smiths Beach better, and highlights the girl better. Cropping the bottom off has given it a more panoramic look that seems easier to look at.
However the original version had more of the the dark expanse of water at the bottom of the image and had a moody, unsettling effect (at least I thought so). Perhaps there are two worthwhile images in this. Here is the original. Does anyone have a preference?
In winter the stream at Smiths Beach winds its way into the ocean, creating an excellent photo opportunity. This is a multiple image stitch of blended exposures.