A Visit to The Scottish Highlands
A couple of months ago I went to the Scottish Highlands for a half-day hike with destination Shenavall Bothy between the peaks of An Teallach and Beinn Dearg Mor.
This journey was more a hiking trip than a landscape photography project. However, I did take a camera, a tripod and a couple of lenses and I took a few photographs on this great journey.
A Paradise For Landscape Photographers
Shenavall is one of the many bothies of the Mountain Bothies Association available for hikers for free accomodation and it is nothing more than a cottage build of stone with only minimal comfort. There is usually no kitchen, no bathroom facilities and no toilets. Some of these bothies are equipped with chairs and a table, most of them have a fire place you can sit in front of on cold winter days but all have one thing in common: there is no comfort.
Everyone who loves hiking might find in the bothies in Scotland and Wales a great opportunity to find free shelter for the night without the need of making pre-bookings. Particularly for landscape photographers the Scottish bothies are an invaluable help for their sometimes adventurous work.
The photograph above was taken near the bothie looking over Loch na Sealga.
I took it on a rainy day on which the sun didn’t want to join the party. However, the light even in grey and hazy days is amazing and can lead to wonderful photographs. Photographers who are not afraid of getting wet and who enjoy working in uncomfortable conditions will find in the Scottish Highlands an incredible source of inspiration and fantastic lighting that does hardly require any gear.
For my next project in the Highlands I will take only the basics needed for what I have in mind. Camera and a good fast lens or two, a little Profoto AcuteB2 600 as a little support on really greyish days, a camera tripod, an expandable Lastolite reflector, lots of storage and a backup solution. That’s it in terms of gear. On top of that a small cooker, a tent, an Isotherm mat and a sleeping bag.
The Scottish Highlands offer endless opportunities for not only landscape but also portrait and even fashion photographers. With Glasgow and Edinburgh just a couple of hours away these major cities offer everything needed for pre-production of any kind of project. Both of them can serve well as a base camp for multiple day projects in the Scottish Highlands as well as an incredible source of creativity and inspiration.
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