The National Parks Service of NSW (Australia) has a great mnemonic reminding us to think before we set out on a hike

  • Take enough stuff (water, food, equipment, etc)
  • Register your hike in advance
  • Emergency personal locator beacon
  • Keep to your planned route

Older than Kosciuszko

A view of Mount Kosciuszko, Australia’s highest mountain, from Charlotte Pass.

www.desparoz.com/2021/02/1…

An interesting overview of some alternative secure messaging apps to WhatsApp

Best WhatsApp alternatives that respect your privacy

Above and Below the Clouds

Nowhere in New Zealand is the nickname of the land of the long white cloud more apt that around Lake Wakatipu.

www.desparoz.com/2021/02/08/above-and-below-the-clouds/

Love this quote from Andy Hutchinson, which accords with my own views on switching to the Fuji X-T3

My X-T4 looks far more like Canon’s original SLR from 1934, than it does my 7D Mark II and the irony of this is not lost on me. It looks like a camera that has been painstakingly engineered to great precision, not tested in wind tunnels for an aerodynamic profile and focus-grouped into oblivion.

February Photo Challenge #5: Pets

Layers of Tori

February Photo Challenge Day 4

Photo Challenge #3: Comfort

Meaning ‘Help Waterfall’, Hjállparfoss is actually twin waterfalls that feed from a common source, and comfort each other as they merge back into a common pool.

Photo Challenge Day 2: Morning Beverage

February Photo Challenge #1: Close Up.

A beautiful nudibranch photo I captured on a trip to PNG a few years back.

Another image from our Iceland journey. The crowds and clouds at the Black Church of Budir made for challenging photography, but I am quite happy with this image.

Black Church in the Gloom

Last November we visited the Warrumbungle National Park and did a short but fantastic hike up to Fan’s Horizon to take in some magnificent views of the Park’s amazing landscapes.

www.desparoz.com/2021/01/1…

Aaron Hockley nails it when has say that Instagram is No Longer a Photography Social Network

Instagram is a general-purpose visual (but not just photography) social network.

In fact, the ‘Gram is all about driving likes and followers, and has little to do with great photography

Facebook, the owner of WhatsApp, has forced an ultimatum upon WhatsApp’s users: share your personal data and metadata from the end- to-end encrypted messenger with Facebook, or lose access to your WhatsApp account.

protonmail.com

Steepen the Curve xkcd.com

This TED Talk from Apollo Robbins at TEDGlobal 2013 is worth re-watching from time-to-time.

It is an incredible demonstration of the art of misdirection at the individual level, but the lessons can be applied online.

www.ted.com/talks/apollo_robbins_the_art_of_misdirection

Mount Ainsley is great for cityscapes over Australia’s national capital.

I wasn’t confident that the sunset would be great, but decided to take a look and found the cloudy sky giving way to a magnificent sunset over the Brindabella ranges.

One of the many amazing sites we visited during our photo tour to Iceland’s Highlands area, was the blue crater of Bláhylur.

🔗Bláhylur Blue Crater

One of the awesome places we visited in our September 2019 visit to Iceland was the very aptly named Hidden Canyon.

The Hidden Canyon

This may not the best image I’ve ever shot, but it is among the most extraordinary.

Read about the iPhone 12 Pro in really low light

I’ve been thinking back regarding our trip to Iceland in Sep 19 (the before times), and to some of my photography gear choices & lessons learned, for a trip to such a photographically stunning yet challenging place.

www.desparoz.com/2020/12/2…

Behind the Falls

Behind the Falls

Among the myriad of waterfalls in Iceland, Seljalandsfoss is unique in that you can easily walk behind the falls to gain a spectacular view through the water curtain over the adjacent plains.

We visited this site on a (typically) overcast day, and got some good images. The following day was much sunnier, so as we drove back to Reykjavik we made a quick stop, which paid off with this image.

Like the nearby Skogafoss, the challenge for photographers is to create images that reduce the crowds. The best way is to get there early before the tour buses from Reykjavik arrive.

An additional approach is to setup a composition with an angle that minimises crowds, and then pick you moment!.

Another challenge here is the spray from the waterfall. It is intense, so you need to setup your composition, cover the lens and the rip off the cover, shoot, wipe and repeat. Needless to say, plenty of microfibre cloths are essential.

This is one location where a very wide lens helps get the full scene, and exposure blending techniques will be useful to balance the very dark to very bright, especially on a sunny day.

Some Favourite Podcasts

A quick post to relay two podcast I really recommend listening to at the moment.

Real Risk is a podcast looking at what motivates people who participate in various ‘risky’ activities. Hosted by my diving friend, Dr Richard ‘Harry’ Harris, cave diver extraordinaire1 and anaesthesist Real Risk has featured many extraordinary guests. Really worth a listen.

For divers, the Deeper Blue Podcast, hosted by Deeper Blue founder Stephan Whelan, is a weekly podcast that explores all things scuba diving. The show has a good format and respects listener time by keeping strictly to a 30 minute weekly format. A great show.


  1. One of the key personalities of the Thai Cave Rescue [return]

Grand Valley

This grand valley lies near Queenstown in New Zealand’s South Island and is a great example of the incredible hils and valleys that make up the Land of the Long White Cloud.

I love the way that the road cutting through the valley disappears into the folds of the surrounding mountains, and the sheer walls of the cliffs.

View this image in my Photo Gallery or on Flickr

See Grand Valley at DesParoz.com

I did a workout with my #AppleWatch and earnt this award celebrating National Parks. #CloseYourRings