NZPhotographer Issue 27, January 2020

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Whether you’re an enthusiastic weekend snapper or a beginner who wants to learn more about photography, New Zealand Photographer is the fun e-magazine for all Kiwi camera owners.

The Queenstown area may have some of the best

views of old glaciated lakes but did you know it

also has some beautiful short day walks with very

photogenic waterfalls and cascades? Why not

come up Wye creek with me for a look at what is on

offer at this beautiful location…

I had seen several photos from this stream over the

years to tempt me to go for a wander to check it out

for myself. On this day I was coming from Athol, I had

not enough money to go to Queenstown just yet and

found a nice little camping ground that was only $10

a night where I could put my tent up, rest, and edit a

few photos.

On my drive up I stopped at Kingston to get a bite to

eat, a pie and some chips is always a classic road trip

meal, before heading up the steep track that starts

off a small car park on the side of the road at Wye

Creek Bridge. The walk to the intake, a small dam on

the upper slopes of the Remarkables mountain range,

starts where the car park is and begins its steep ascent

very quickly with no warning what so ever. It is tough

but if you turn around you see some motivation as the

more you walk the bigger Lake Wakatipu gets with its

impressive views towards Queenstown as well as the

other direction to Kingston although this arm is too

long and you can’t see down to this township.

To understand the steepness you start the track

at around 375 meters above sea level and where

I stopped to take photos was at 700 meters so a

gain of 325 meters in around 1 hour of walking, that

is around 5 meters of elevation gain every minute. It

might not seem like a lot but when you’re walking up

there with your time-lapse gear, tripod, drink and a bit

of food it is a bit of a struggle on the body and mind!

I arrived in a relatively decent time but I was hot, I’d

brought my cup with me as I always enjoy drinking

fresh mountain snow and this stream feeds from the

Wye Creek basin which is a wilderness area. Once I’d

cooled down a bit I put another layer on as I was

starting to get cold (the water was very nice to drink,

by the way) then I set up my time-lapse with the log in

the waterfall (I thought it a unique composition as one

day that log won’t be there anymore) and stepped

away, watching to make sure no splashing water was

hitting the front element.

I found a little path that I could scramble up to get

to the upper part of the stream without entering the

frame of my camera and had a look around above

the waterfall. I found it to be quite interesting with

lots of little cascades coming down making me think

maybe my 14mm lens would be ideal for these little

ones as I can get nice and close.

F16, 1/2s, ISO100

12

NZPhotographer

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