That Golden Light

Cape Town saw one major storm pull through on Friday night. Yet by Saturday morning all bad weather had cleared up.

I woke up early the Saturday morning and headed out in the dark to get to West Coast National Park before the sun rose. It was still very cold and hardly any cars on the road. I followed the West Coast road that runs along a small mountain range. As I got closer and closer to the park I could see the sky starting to change colour around the mountain edges. It was phenomenal. Purple, blues, red, orange and yellow hues started showing.

An hour later and I had finally made it to the park. I was first to sign in at the gate. Straight ahead of the entrance was the full moon still high in the sky. By now the sky had lit up already, but the colours on the horizon still showed.

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My aim for the day was to shoot in this mysterious “Golden Light” that all photographers talk about. My first subject in the park was a lone Ostrich, but the sun had not yet revealed itself so I got a pic or two and moved on.

I drove out to the Geelbek Bird Hide where I was hoping to shoot from and achieve my goal for the day. As I got out of my car, I saw some Eland. And as luck would have it, they were perfectly positioned for me to shoot them with the full sunrise behind them. I was blown away at the quality of the light and finally got that golden magic that so many are after.

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The Eland moved on and so did I. I took a quick walk to the hide so that I still had an opportunity to get some decent flamingo pictures.

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The light was only just shining at its best so that I could get a quick shot at some Greater Flamingos in the distance. The golden light faded very quickly and a slight mist rolled in.

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