Golden Brown by AlisterBenn

Hi all,

Day two of our Iceland Tour and we get these conditions at Jokulsarlon. One of the best sunsets I have had in all the years I have been there.

This image was made with super strong side light from the sun just above the horizon, lighting up this ice berg like a light bulb.

A really gorgeous moment. Wind screaming outside now – another wild night on Iceland. But with three happy clients.

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Storm’s End by AlisterBenn

Hi all from Iceland, we arrived last night at the start of 35 days of tours and workshops.

Before we came up, we were on the Isle of Skye for three days, just getting warmed up and looking for a new home.

It was a successful trip and typically for the west of Scotland at this time of year, we had variable weather from horizontal rain, to glorious sunsets.

I love this area for its contrasts, jagged mountains, rivers that in 24 hours went from calm, still meanders, to raging torrents – wonderful conditions to immerse in the landscape.

This is about 11 vertical images merged to pano in Lightroom CC and further processed on the laptop in Photoshop.

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The Clearances by AlisterBenn

Once, most of the Scottish Highlands was one huge forest; the home of bears, beaver, wolves, Lynx and more.

Within the last 200 years the vast majority of it has been felled.

Thankfully, the tide may be turning and once again Scotland is being forested with native species. A new dawn perhaps?

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Lost Horizons by AlisterBenn

Shangri La – a hidden valley in the Himalaya, as written about in the book Lost Horizons by James Hilton.

Surely this is the valley?

Overlooked by Everest, Lhotse and Makalu with over 4000m of vertical elevation.

This shot was taken from near our camp 4 in the valley floor at 4250m – a rest from the higher altitude areas above us.

The frost on the foreground plants was so blue compared to the sunlit mountains behind.

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Dreamline by AlisterBenn

This image was taken on our second night of the trek from near our Camp 2 at 4950m/16240 feet.

Marc Adamus had found this little lake earlier in the day and although we had headed for our tents with the peaks shrouded in low cloud – by 10:30pm everything was clear.

Finding the lake again in the pitch dark was a laugh, all of us floundering around in the dark, breathless at the altitude and the pressing cold.

However, all turned out well and watching the Milky Way over Everest, Lhotse and Makalu was breath-taking.

As usual, I managed to find the water by stepping up to my knees in it!

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The Old Forest by AlisterBenn

Once upon a time, Scotland was covered in this magnificent forest – the industrial revolution saw the end of that – fuel for the fires and progress.

Then came the sheep and the Highland Clearances – a mass exodus that saw America, Australia, Canada and New Zealand grow in numbers and the birth of Scottish ancestry.

Thankfully, Scotland is being forested once again and the old forest is becoming new forest. Good news for Scotland and for me.

8 shot vertical pano stitched in CC 2015.

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Tibetan Sunrise by AlisterBenn

My wife and I have a long relationship with Tibet having lived in the region for over 7 years.

This image was taken from about 4500m outside the village of Tingri (the jumping off town for Everest north).

I kept warm in the pre dawn by having a push up competition with our Tibetan driver – 🙂

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Protect Us by AlisterBenn

Trekking in then Himalaya a wonderful experience – massive mountains, friendly people, great food and thin air. The perfect recipe for a good time (in my book anyway!)

Ama Dablam is a beautiful mountain and hangs over much of the trek up to Everest Base Camp from the south (Nepal) side.

The trail is punctuated by many of these Tibetan Stuppas – little shrines of worship, decorated with stones carved with the repetitive Om Mani Padmi Hum. This shot by moonlight illuminated for me a beautiful experience of solitude and reflection.

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