I got to the beach just before 8.30am, after the short drive there from Reynivellir (it's so close!). Already there were other photographers dotted along the beach so it wasn't quite as serene as I'd hoped. Within ten minutes a couple of groups had arrived and it felt rather busy. I wandered along the east beach looking for some good icebergs for sunrise (the skies were fairly clear, with the exception of the usual snowstorm cloud on the horizon (every day they were there!)). I tried out a few compositions of a couple of icebergs as the sky became a little pink - it was rather lovely.
I met my new German friend from the guesthouse, Annette, who set up her tripod nearby. As the sun began to break over the clouds, photographers were still rushing past, trying to find a good spot. Annette and I had spoken about how some photographers can be completely unaware of their surroundings or fellow togs and just walk straight in front of your shot, etc. This clueless behaviour was definitely on display this morning, and I called out to a woman who was about to walk right in front of me, not only getting in my shot, but also creating ugly footprints in the currently-pristine sand. Crisis averted, she eventually walked behind me she made some comment about it being easier to walk on the wet sand. Annette and I both shook our heads and rolled our eyes! I know the beach is for everyone, but have some common sense and courtesy!
The sun disappeared again briefly so I moved back to the other two icebergs and stayed there for a while. It was a glorious morning. The sun flares were an issue, as usual when shooting straight into the sun, and it wasn't easy to block it out to take shots to merge, so I just went with it.
The sun rose up above the cloud and soon it was broad daylight again. Most of the photographers left pretty soon after, which was nice for me, as I find that too many others mars the tranquility (er, see below!).
At least as the people were in groups when they left a large number of people went at the same time. I wandered around among the icebergs away from the surf and took a few detail shots, finding one particular berg that I was fascinated by - parts of it reminded me of a biological picture of an eye socket.
I got back to the guesthouse at 1pm - having been on the beach for four and a half hours. Not my maximum, but still a pretty good session! Batteries were plugged in, photos downloaded, and food, water and tea were consumed. I didn't head back to the beach until 4pm, by which stage the blue skies were gone and it was grey and dull. It wasn't very busy, as there was clearly going to be no sunset, but I still headed away from the car-park to get more solitude.
There were a few icebergs scattered about in the surf line, so I stopped to capture a few water trails and iceberg still lives.
I could see the large dark iceberg pieces in the distance, so trudged through the sand to reach it. On the way I passed a rabbit :) The colours were getting tricky to capture, as the light was so flat and grey.
I reached the dark bergs and found that there was really just a skeleton left, with the majority of the ice washed away by repetitive bashing by waves. It was difficult to photograph as the waves kept moving them around as they flowed over and around them - and I hate moving icebergs in my shots! I desaturated the shots too as the colour was a horrible greeny-blue (see rabbit shot above!).
Eventually I turned round, passing one other photographer, and headed back to the car. Which obviously took longer than expected as I continued to stop and take just one more photo...
Click here for my blog from Day 7 - Stafafell to Jökulsárlón