Falls of Falloch
While in Scotland, I took the time out for a trip into the highlands; my final destination on the drive north was to be Ben Lawers National Nature Reserve, past Killin and overlooking Loch Tay. I was here for an optimistic search for the nationally rare Mountain Ringlet butterfly – one of the few UK species still not on my list. The weather was ok, but not good enough for me to see any of the butterflies in my target location – among the tussocks on the slopes it was very windy as well as occasionally overcast. I did however see one or two other things which I may post about later.
Yet all was not lost: I have long since learnt that with such hit-and-miss affairs you have to set out with a variety of options (particularly photographically). I scouted out local maps, tourist information, and websites for alternative or extra destinations, and two other locations immediately suggested themselves in addition to the possibilities that the drive up past Loch Lomond might present: these were the Falls of Dochart at Killin, and the Falls of Falloch south of Crianlarich, both potentially photogenic scenic river views. In the end, the falls of Dochart were rather too busy with tourists and too inaccessible for shots other than relatively wide-angle shots which would have included too many extraneous elements. The Falls of Falloch, were, however, very pleasant and photogenic; I arrived quite early on a weekday morning, and had the place to myself for an hour; I also stayed for another hour or so on the return journey.
Though the main attraction here is the large waterfall along the path through the trees, there are a number of other reasonably accessible viewpoints from the waterside allowing different angles on the water. Here I shot the D800E at both 50mm for a standard perspective, and at 21mm for wider angle shots; as with the previous water shots from the River Nith, I shot with a 1.2 ND filter and a circular polarizer, to slow down the exposures substantially, to cut out glare and reflections from the water, and to make the greens more vivid.
A selection of these shots are presented below.
Though I like most of these shots, my favourites are the first and the last.
I like the first since it is the classic view of the falls, though with the added benefits of the camera and lens combination, in the form of the vivid and crisp greens framing the shot, and the sharpness through the frame provided by focus-stacking at the sharpest aperture.
I like the last because, though perhaps a little cluttered, it does present a very calming and peaceful view of the river from a nice and unusual perspective.
The other shots are ok; the wide-angle vertical shots suffer a little I suppose from a bit of compositional dithering – though especially the second one really shows off what the Zeiss lens can really do – shot 5 works compositionally better from shot 4; I think I didn’t go for a horizontal with these because of some extraneous clutter at the edges of the frame.
Stack of 3 frames, Zeiss 21mm
ISO 50 0.6” f/7.1
50f1.4G, ISO 100 2” f/7.1
50f1.4G, ISO 100 1.6” f/7.1
Zeiss 21mm, ISO 100 0.6” f/7.1
Zeiss 21mm, ISO 100 0.6” f/7.1
50f1.4G, ISO 100 2.5” f/7.1