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An overnight stop in the Snowy's

Over the hill you say? Yes! On my way out west I spent a night at 3 mile dam campground, plus photographing Paddy's Falls near Tumbarumba, and an afternoon visit to Yarrangobilly Caves.

I didn't smash it on the shots, but I did enjoy testing out OM-1's built in ND filter, which is one of the computational modes. But as I found, it does chew through your battery power. Usually I carry a spare with me, but this time I'd left it in the van at the top of the hill, and I was too lazy to walk back up to the top to get it!

The slowest shutter speed at lowest ISO of 80 I could obtain, with exposure still in the ballpark and f22, was 1/40th second. But after switching on the ND64 setting, I managed to get down to 1/6th second! Quite remarkable in bright afternoon sunshine. I can shoot hand held at 1/6th second and also get nice smooth water.

When I want to shoot smooth water flow in the early morning - such as at the beach over rocks etc - I usually set my shutterspeed to 1/6th second, then adjust f-stop and ISO around it, prioritising f-stop over ISO. I find 1/6th second is a sweet spot with image stabilisation, I can rattle off a few shots at this speed and find most of them are sharp. Always pays to take a few extra shots when shooting handheld, as below 1/20th second, I find not all will be sharp, despite my best efforts!

Here is the result at Paddy's using the ND64 - just look at that smooth water in bright sunshine!

Just for comparison, here's the results of the 2 similar shots, both at ISO80, f22.

Without ND64 filter, shutterspeed of 1/40th - not slow enough to really smooth the water:

And with the ND64 on, achieving shutterspeed of 1/6th second:

Although I think this one below is my favourite shot! I'm not that keen on the bright blue sky. I was hoping to get a bit of sunset light but alas, the direction was wrong with the sun setting behind the hill, not throwing any light my way.

ISO 400, f7.1, 1/250th second. I upped the ISO a bit to get sharper water drops.

Next day, after illegally camping somewhere I'm not revealing 😂, onto Yarrangobilly for an afternoon stroll through the South Glory Cave and a bit of birding. I was pleasantly surprised by the number of birds there, managed a few shots in the carpark night next to my van.

Flame Robin (M) ISO 3200, 500mm, f5.6, 1/400th

Nice lichen twigs too!

White-browed Scrub Wren ISO 3200, 360mm, f5.6, 1/400th

Juvenile Crimson Rosella ISO 2000, 500mm, f8, 1/1600th second.

A couple of shots in the caves, which are dimly lit. I didn't take my tripod, all handheld.

It was cold in there! Late March and I should have taken a warmer jumper.

Did my trick of setting shutter speed to 1/6th second for my lowest comfortable handheld setting, with f5.6 and adjusted ISO around to 2500.

Probably should have made more effort but sometimes I'm not that motivated for landscapes these days....I guess I'm really just a bird chaser!

Next off to 3 Mile Dam to set up camp for the night. Not a bad spot for spring and autumn...summer probably a bit too hot and dry and winter obviously out of the question unless you want to ski! Quite a few fisherman I should have taken the fishing rod and tried for a trout dinner 😋

I enjoyed a relaxing evening and then morning stroll with the camera and my big puffy coat! Plus a night photo close to the comfort of the campfire - it was probably the wine but the trees looked really appealing with their starry backdrop.

Foggy and damp start to the day, beautifully calm and serene 😍

And these cormorants, all looking up as my friends drone flew past! Thank you Andy, great timing 😁

One last composite moon shot - the moon was still low in the sky in the foggy morning, and this dead tree just lent itself to hosting a bit of moon illusion.

Edited in Lightroom with moon composite layer added in Affinity Photo, then back into Lightroom for a final tweak.

All in all, a nice little more than happy to do it again in the spring!

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