Ffestiniog Railway: Steam 150 (May 2013)

Managed to find time between work to go to this but managed to miss just about everything I had really wanted to see! Never mind, got some good practice in with the 70-210 and even the 17-50 got a good workout. In fact for a change it was the 11-16 that was lagging behind in usage! Saturday was spent entirely in and around Boston Lodge, and Monday was a walk from Boston Lodge all the way to Dduallt. The weather was fine clear skies on Monday, not ideal at all, much better on Saturday with dappled cloud and the odd really dark brooding sky mixing things up and keeping the light interesting!

Steam 150 (Saturday)
Polishing a dome.... Steam 150 (Saturday)
Steam 150 (Saturday)
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Steam 150 (Saturday) Steam 150 (Saturday) Steam 150 (Saturday)
Steam 150 (Saturday)
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Steam 150 (Saturday) Steam 150 (Saturday)
Traditional Lunch! Steam 150 (Saturday)
Steam 150 (Saturday)
Steam 150 (Saturday)
Steam 150 (Saturday)
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Steam 150 (Saturday)
Steam 150 (Saturday) Steam 150 (Saturday)
Steam 150 (Saturday)
Steam 150 (Saturday) Steam 150 (Monday)
Steam 150 (Monday)
Steam 150 (Monday) Steam 150 (Monday)

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Classic Festiniog

Classic Festiniog 7/10/12
An interesting gala this one, a tribute to the late Alan Pegler and the early preservation era. Unfortunately I couldn’t get time off work to indulge in the whole event but I spent enough time there when I could!
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There was a huge amount to see: Classic train formations, Gravity trains, demonstration freight, recreation of the chain shunt and Boston Lodge works was open on the Saturday for a look around.
All very enjoyable, though I busted an ankle at Cei Mawr on the Sunday, that made for a fun night of work – still it means no excuses today (Monday) for not getting the pics processed!

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Classic Festiniog 6/10/12
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So lets see what we have! In my usual style we have some wide shots of the whole landscape with a train, some more signs and notices and a whole lot of details from Boston Lodge. Oh yes there are a few trains too! I have also taken some lomo shots on an old film compact, the results of that will be worth seeing when I get round to finishing the roll!
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Classic Festiniog

Quarryscapes at Quarrypower!

Quarry Power Cavalcade

What with other commitments (Like Rallying!) taking up my time I didn’t get to spend the full weekend at Quarrypower, but I did manage to get to the cavalcade of locomotives travelling down the Welsh Highland, particularly the showcase at Cwm Cloch above Beddgelert. There was a pretty good turnout considering the rather dull weather, High ISO was the norm for the day though there were occasional bright spells and even the odd hint of blue in the sky!

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The Fuji S3 is perfect for days like this – as one photographer on the day put it it appears to have a ‘Sunshine Button’! You’ll notice that I’ve been shifting a lot towards people pictures, something I don’t normally do. You’ll also notice that I’m not that good at them, constantly missing focus! I will get there though!

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I’ve also gone for a lot of detail shots, trying to maximise use of my Nikkor 35mm f1.8,as it tends to go unused on most shoots. I still think it’s a poor standard lens, but it’s certainly capable of some good results.

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Linda Quarrypower
Quarrypower

Wales Rally GB

Whilst I am unable to venture into the forests due to other photography commitments I was able to go to the ceremonial start in Llandudno and capture some of the event.

It seems my photography technique has deserted me, so I’m working especially hard on my hand holding again now (10 degree horizon?), amazing what you can forget when you don’t use a camera in a while!

Anyway, some of the better shots of the evening

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Tis No Four Door Nerves
Proper Rally Car :)
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Toyota Powered
Quattro WRC

That’s probably my longest post to date 🙂 Hope you like!

Olympic Torch Relay

The torch relay has stirred up a lot of polarised opinions locally, this is after all Gwynedd, where everything from across the border is perceived as evil and even more so if it’s London based! Despite that it is something that isn’t going to happen here again in our lifetime so for that reason I think a lot of people who don’t necessarily support the Olympics turned out for the parade. It was also a beautiful sunny day which probably helped! 🙂

My day started off in Blaenau Ffestiniog, no sign of the usual rain here, I even got sunburnt! (Aside: I got sunburnt in Blaenau last year too!) I’ve never seen Blaenau look so good! I didn’t get as much time as I’d have liked in Blaenau, my own fault I was running late so it was straight off to the FR station to see the torch pass onto the railway.

Hugh Napier Belly of the beast

I spy Press Pit

Hugh Napier was in steam as an advert for the National Trust. Alongside was the official torch bearing train headed by David Lloyd George.

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Olympic Torch @ Blaenau

Elin Owen from Llanrug took the torch onto the footplate for official press shots. These were perhaps a little ill conceived – the overhead lunchtime sun casting awkward shadows across her face. Perhaps the official train should have been across the platform in the space ocupied by Hugh Napier? No matter, I was able to pull off a couple of shots thanks to the Fuji’s excellent dynamic range, however the best photo went to Rory Trappe, who caught the moment perfectly!

Anyway,  En route back to Pwllheli I stopped off at Gysgfato catch the train en route, not my finest photo but no one else was bothering…

Olympic relay train in action

And then it was off to Pwllheli, to enjoy a little more of the spectacle in the glorious afternoon sunshine. The whole Llyn peninsula must have been packed into Pwllheli, the place was heaving. Far busier than I ever thought possible!

Keeping up with the younguns  Olympic torch relay @ Pwllheli Coca Cola Getting in the swing

The Crowd
Got your Number

Torch Relay @ Pwllheli

Everyone enjoyed themselves I think, and I’m glad I went!