Within a few kilometres of my home there are an amazing array of rock formations and beaches. They are always changing, and always worth photographing. Here are two very different shots taken within a couple of kilometres of each other. The first was taken at Canal Rocks just after sunrise. This rock formation is a natural canal with a row of offshore “islands” protecting the canal. There are gaps in this protection and the sea surges into the canal which has strong currents. A slow shutterspeed shows these currents.
The next shot was taken mid afternoon at Wyadup. The incoming waves were reflecting off the rocks and the surfers were catching this superimposed wave. I specifically went down mid afternoon to get the sun backlighting the waves (we face West here!).
A D800E, Lee Big Stopper and lots of water movement. A good recipe. The first image is interesting – the beach changes almost daily in this area. A week ago you could walk almost up the middle of this image. Soon this will all be deep water, and will remain that way until next summer when the buildup of sand will begin again.
This next image is of a large V – Shaped gap which channels the waves forcing them into the V with increasing force. This is definitely not a place to swim, and is a dangerous place to fish from.
And finally this is where the water forced up into the gap winds up. Occasionally I have seen people swimming here and when the water surges in from the gap, they stand under it like standing under a waterfall.
Very often sunsets here fizzle out due to a large band of cloud that forms over the horizon. Last night looked promising, so I went down to Wyadup. At the last minute a small band of cloud appeared on the horizon, and this prevented the sunset from developing into a full blown knock your socks off sunset, but it was pretty good.
The shore along this stretch is interesting. Over summer the sand will build up, and this whole area becomes a sandy beach. Most of these rocks are either covered by sand or partly covered. Then during winter the storms wash it all away again and the cycle starts over again.
There is this place where the waves are channelled into a V – shaped gap. The water blasts over the rocks at the end of the gap, and falls into a shallow canal which takes the water away. On quiet days the water doesn’t get over the rocks at the end of the gap. When it does it is a great place to practice slow exposures.
This is the shot I went down to Wyadup to take when I saw the whales playing. I went down at sunset so I could get to this vantage point before it was dark.
I went down to Wyadup this evening to try for a shot with the stars in the sky. However when I got there there were about 20 whales going past. They appeared to be a lot of humpback calves and a few mums. The calves were having fun practising breaching. (I will post the result of the star shots later).
These are magnificent creatures. When I went to school in this area we never saw whales. They were killed before they got past Albany. Eventually whaling ceased, but only when the estimated number of whales (probably humpbacks) left was less than the whaling company’s annual catch. In other words if they hadn’t stopped then they probably would have within a couple of months due to lack of whales. It is fantastic to be able to see the numbers increasing each year, and just to be able to go down to the coast and see sights like this. I hope they never again get hunted to the brink of extinction.