Here we are, half way through January and I feel that we have not yet felt the icy fingers of winter, it could be the lull before what is now termed a polar vortex but used to be simply known as ‘a cold snap’.
Today, winter arrived but in one of it’s kinder moods, one of those cold, bright days where you wake to a dusting of frost on house roofs and the grass has turned white, as if through shock.
It is about an hour before the sun will rise, but through the lifting darkness there appears to be a blanket of mist in the distance, the omens are good for some more photos along the Exe.
As I head out, it would appear Jack Frost has worked overtime, painted icy swirls on cars that are actually quite beautiful to look at, for me at least, not those that may have to spend time scraping it off if they need be somewhere early.
I reach the footpath to the river, luminous yellow jacketed volunteers have been out in force placing route direction signs for a fun run that has been organised today, it is not long before the serious runners appear in the distance, I will happily step aside as they pass, to a man (or woman) they keep a regular check on their watches in their pursuit of personal best times.
As the first group passes, I admire the serene beauty of frost laden brambles and other hedgerow flora and fauna, the stillness of the river and the eerie silence of the still heavy mist on the river.
Through the mist, I can just make out a heron, stood statue like by the waters edge, as the next group of runners pass by, it takes off effortlessly, and there he was…. gone.
The sun has made an appearance, just a milky glow as seeks to penetrate through the cloud but makes for some atmospheric shots as more runners appear in the distance, more shadow than portrait, I think these may just work.
I have a good half mile to go before I get to where I hope the best moody shots could be, I would really like the mist to hang around a while longer to get some shots of the scullers as they appear through the fog.
There is a pub nearby called the double locks, here they have a couple landing stages for the boats to be physically pulled in and out of the water to make progress in either direction.
My fears of the sun burning through the cloud are unfounded, here I get a couple of shots I am really happy with, anything else is a bonus.
I would appear to have something of a routine going these days, as I am about to head for home, I will find a place to sit, and enjoy the hot thermos of tea I made earlier, while making a few notes for today’s blog and a few ideas for my later photo editing.
What a great start to the day.