Wanaka is a spectacular place: big mountains, lots of water, and a variety of scenic views. We spent a few days there a couple of weeks ago, visiting my son. The highlight was a trip up to Mount Aspiring Hut, but that deserves a post of its own. For now, I’ll stick to a few images taken around sunrise. This one, for example:
That picture was taken near the part of the lake known as the Outlet, the source of the mighty Clutha River. It was taken at 0820 on a midwinter morning, with the temperature at -1 C and the wind gusting about 25 kn. For just a few moments, the sun illuminated the base of the clouds and the whole lake was transformed. A few minutes earlier, the scene had looked very different. This picture was taken at 0816, for example:
Incidentally, for that second image the overall light level was fairly low so a very long exposure was used (30s). That has the effect of making all of the waves, whitecaps, etc disappear, leaving behind a filmy, misty surface on the lake. The effect occurs even with the 4 second exposure of the first image.
Only 20 minutes later, the magic had all but disappeared:
That’s of course not the first time I’ve been out before dawn in these parts. The view from the lake front directly below the town centre can also be quite impressive. This one was taken in late summer:
In the summer, the nearby hills really light up as the sun get higher in the sky.
There are some wonderful day walks around Wanaka, many of them with great views. Here’s an example, from the track up to a place called Diamond Lake:
Diamond Lake itself is not very large (nor does it look much like a diamond):
Another view from the area: