Being a photographer, you get to shoot some pretty amazing things at some pretty amazing spots at times. Not to far up the road in the Port Stephens area we have Stockton Beach – a 32 Km (20 mile) stretch of beach, sand and dunes that are truly spectacular. A large part of the beach lies in the Worimi Conversation Lands area – land of the traditional indigenous owners – which includes the Worimi National Park. In some parts of the beach is as wide as 1 km with sand dunes over 30m (98 ft) high. The dunes system make up the largest continuous mobile sand dunes in the Southern Hemisphere.
The beach (or bight as it is also known) is also home to the MV Sygna. A 53,000 tonne Norwegian bulk carrier, that ran aground during a major storm in May 1974. According to the local port authority, the Sygna is the last of 59 ships which have been lost on Newcastle shores, although that almost changed in June 2007 when the MV Pasha Bulker ran around on the citys Nobbys beach (but thats a whole other story).
With 30-40 other like minded sundancer mates we headed off in the very wee hours of the morning in early March for an organised sunrise shoot at the Sygna and then into the dunes.
The morning started off lovely and looked like it was going to be a good sunrise and then almost without warning a thick almost ghostly fog shrouded the ship and the sunrise was hidden. Yep the weather can be a real deal maker or breaker sometimes. Not quite the morning we had all been hoping for, but the fog certainly added some atmosphere to our shots.
As for the poor fisherman, I’m not sure that they knew what to make of 40 odd camera and tripod toting folk appearing out of the dunes at the wee hours of the morning, I’m pretty sure they weren’t thinking – ah the serenity of it all 🙂
Once we had finished at the ship we headed up the beach and into the mighty sand dunes. Nature is truly a magic specimen at work, the dunes system is spectacular and a little over whelming at times, you look and feel like a small bug amongst them.
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