Into the Mountains of the Rioja

The mountains are entirely different from the golden valley vineyards and fields of grain. The scenery quickly changes from an arid countryside to lush green forests. There is one particular area that seems almost a world apart from the rest of the Rioja countryside! I would even go so far to say magical!

This place had an icy mountain stream running through it, adding soft sounds of water over stone. The canopy was quite thick in places, with giant, ancient, trees. Some of the larger ones were twisted into irregular shapes, giving even a more effect of something old and wise. Under the dark canopy, the moss grows thick, blanketing everything! It has a ethereal and tranquil beauty.

We had gone to this place earlier in the week, but I had only brought my tiny hand-held camera, and the photos were thoroughly disappointing. It had been a gorgeous day with not a cloud to be seen and the sun dropped through the canopy in golden rays. Breathtaking! I begged Loreto to go back, and the last day in the Rioja, we did! Unfortunately the day was pretty overcast, and the natural light slightly difficult to work with. Still, I’m pretty happy with how things turned out. We probably spent a few hours there; Loreto hanging with a friend, and me running from one place to another, taking photographs.

I actually (accidentally) came upon a new “technique”. Since I have never taken formal classes, everything has been self-taught or learned by experimentation. I finally figured out how to capture moving water in a way that makes it look “misty” and beautiful! I did not have a tripod, so if you look close enough you can see a little shakiness, which I’m annoyed about. I tried my best to keep the blur to a minimum, but it’s hard, especially without a tripod, hands-free trigger, or a long exposure.

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Liam mooney - I also have a waterfall at my fire station.

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