On The Flip Side of a Reconnoiter

We have returned from our excursion in Iceland and let me say that the country is phenomenal. We arrived in Reykjavik early on a windy, rainy, and generally dreary Sunday. After picking up our camper van from Kuku Camper we headed directly out of the city and into the wild Snæfellsnes peninsula. This area is often called Iceland in miniature because of the density and diversity of landscape within 150 miles of coastal road. Needless to say the rain didn’t let up the entire first day, and the cloud cover was heavy to the point of hanging right over our heads for much of the afternoon. 

When traveling with an intention of making images you never know what challenges you will face, and in this country the biggest challenges were the extreme weather variations. Luckily the Canon 5DS is a rugged, and thankfully weatherproofed camera, which allows for shooting in light rain. This isn't saying that you should stand in a downpour, but I had no problem at all with the exposure to spray, wind, and splatter of various types of rain that we encountered. And yes, there are many types of rain in Iceland. I think that someone should categorize and describe them. But I digress. These rapidly changing weather conditions created a never ending challenge in how I approached the subjects during the first day. We found ourselves stopping with jaws agape around every corner, and since we didn’t really know what we were going to see, we dutifully photographed everything. Needless to say things kept getting better, and the images that first day didn’t measure up to the images of the second. 

After finding a place to park our camper van for the night we discovered that our heater didn’t work. Did I mention that the weather in Iceland is always changing? Given the fact that we were prepared to sleep in a camper van with a bit of heat, we ended up wearing every layer of clothing we brought that first night. Plus two hats on our heads. We travel for adventure, right? Suddenly the nighttime temperatures became a very important issue for us, and we discovered that freezing temperatures in September are not all that uncommon. Combine that fact with wind and you have a recipe for miserable nights. Upon waking however, we found a new world altogether.

A Brilliant Morning on Snæfellsnes. Shot with a Canon 5DS and 70-200 F4 L IS lens. 

A Brilliant Morning on Snæfellsnes. Shot with a Canon 5DS and 70-200 F4 L IS lens. 

For those who want to know more about the location and position of the sun for the image. 

For those who want to know more about the location and position of the sun for the image. 

The weather had cleared, and the cloaked mountain that we slept next to revealed itself in the glory of Iceland light. There is something fascinating about the light of Iceland and how it caresses the landscape, sculpts it, and reveals depth in ways that I have never seen before. The air on this particular morning was filled with moisture and the light injected the atmosphere with life and depth. Stunning is only one of the superlatives that I could use here, and for now it will suffice to express what we felt during those first few hours of experiencing Iceland in the light of a new day. 

A pulled back version of the same mountain, with a rural road for context.

A pulled back version of the same mountain, with a rural road for context.

More posts are coming. Stay tuned. Dying to know what happened the rest of the day in Snæfellsnes? Subscribe to our newsletter for updates!