Glendalough's Upper Lake

We were told it was a short hike from the Glendalough Hotel to the Upper Lake.  It is, if you know the way!  We got up very early with a goal of being at the lake's edge for blue hour and then sunrise.  It was worth getting up early.

The sun was rising behind us.  We just kept hoping that the sun would break through the clouds for just long enough . . . I was fascinated that the mist that formed on the lake is seen better in its reflection!  We could see it rise from the surface and be carried away with a gentle breeze towards the back of the lake.  It was so quiet, serene, peaceful. It seemed that some other photographer had put these rocks at a most auspicious place.

The sun peeked through and lit up the tops of the mountains.  I was so excited I could barely breathe!  Of course, Tom and I are shooting the same scene, separated by just feet.  Yet, our images are a bit different and that can spark a good conversation!  Is asymmetry a more creative composition?  Or . . . name your point.  We have a lot of fun with these sorts of questions!!

Then, the sun quickly disappeared behind the clouds again!

Another perspective!

The water was very clear . . . and cold!

I did not see a trail marking for walking around the lake.  If I ever go back I am looking for one.

Once we had our sunrise shot of the lake we looked around for other interesting items to photograph.

Once it got light enough to see, we realized we had hiked in very close to a large parking lot.  The trees were just fabulous!  Within one minute of taking this image, huge busses started arriving and in ten minutes there were hundreds of children disembarking, gleeful to be out on a field trip, with teachers trying to get some order to the chaos. Thankfully, we were ready to move on!  The rest of the morning we could hear children shouting and having fun up and down the canyon.

Starting the hike back.  Just a few steps down the road we spotted a boardwalk that was closer to the creek between Upper and Lower Lake.  We opted to get off this road and avoid being run over by large buses.  Believe it or not, this is a two lane road (sort of).

The Lower Lake

When I used to think of Irish 'green' I thought of it as a special color, some hue that is decidedly different than all the other greens.  Now that I have been to Ireland I have a different perspective.  Irish green refers to having everything green, everywhere, intense, unbelievable 'in your face' GREEN.  It is a green that when you open your file, with no edits or changes you think to yourself, "Nobody is going to believe that this image is NOT cooked!"

Unless, of course, it is green going to yellow and orange in the fall!

As it turns out, the proper trail back to our hotel leads right through the monastery, the other site we wanted to photograph.  Not only that, but when we were told we would be close to the best photo opportunities we did not expect to see the entrance to the  park and the monastery right from our hotel window!!  We had simply taken the long route to the Upper Lake in the dark, walking right past the entrance!