Monday, October 16, 2006

4am wake-up for 紅葉

I got up at 4am today for an early morning hike. My idea was to catch the sunrise from the rocks and to get some shots of this year's autumn leaves. As the old saying goes, the earlly bird catches the best light. It was lovely, but I was about fifteen minutes late to the rocks for the sun. That didn't bother me though because the light in the woods this morning was great.

I got to the rocks at around six and sat there taking shots for a few minutes, but I had it in my mind to be at the top by around half eight or nine, so I went on promptly. At the 'Devil's Ring' the sun was starting to shine on the adjacent ridge and you could see just how fantastic the reds were in the woods. I kept going though, in order to meet my target.

I don't know how many times I've photographed this little shoulder sprouting off the mountain. It looks really good when you're sat up there on Akakura, but I never seem to get the shots I want out of it. I ate an apple and went on up to the top.

I got up there a little bit late, but I wasn't too hard on myself. In this shot you can see the old shed where people sleep sometimes, and in the foreground you can see the ruins of the souvenir shop that used to sell over-priced badges to fair weather hikers. I'm glad it got crushed under the snow this year, and I'm glad they didn't get it back up in time to rip off this year's punters.

I don't know why but I never find peaks very good places to take photos, not usually anyway. Today though, perhaps because of the early light, I found that the peak was alright.

Pondering over what time limit I should set myself to get down.

I don't keep count, but I know I've climbed this mountain about 45 times now from the bottom of the two main trails to the top of the old bird. Before I leave next spring I want to make sure I have a good clean 50 climbs under my belt, and realistically I only have about 7 weeks left to get those last five done, so expect some more of the same over the coming weeks folks because I'm going to relish every last moment of it before it's gone for good/the time-being.