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Wildflower Photography

Wildflower Photography

by David Bigwood

(from his e-book Starting Nature Photography)

“Wow!” That was Margaret’s reaction as she viewed the masses of colourful blooms that were just beginning to carpet the heath above Perisher Valley in the Snowy Mountains in New South Wales that only weeks before had been covered in snow. She had only taken up photography seriously a few months previously (an ‘if I can’t stop him, I might as well join him’ decision or maybe it had something to do with me giving her an Olympus SP350 for her birthday) and before I even had my camera out of its bag she was across the road crouching among the flowers shooting like a professional.

We had come to the Snowy Mountains in New South Wales, one of my very favourite parts of Australia, in early summer. I had not previously made a habit of photographing flowers but the display in the alpine meadow beside which I had stopped the car was stunning — not as breathtaking as later in the summer perhaps but certainly stunning. And, joining the ‘if I can’t stop her, I might as well join her’ brigade, I fell into line and was soon crouching before the flowers myself engrossed in the sheer beauty of these plants that survive and flourish in the harsh environment in which they live.

To read the full article Click here

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The Snowy Mountains — not just a winter playground

The Snowy Mountains — not just a winter playground

by David Bigwood

It’s not just the winter snows and the chance of a schuss down the hills of Perisher or Thredbo that is attracting visitors to the New South Wales Snowy Mountains now. They are coming in increasing numbers all year round.

Tourists are finding there is a multitude of activities to suit the tastes of those who appreciate the great Australian outdoors. Just as the Snowy Mountains Scheme opened up vast areas of previously inaccessible country for skiers and walkers, so the dams that it built have provided playgrounds for the boating and fishing fraternities.

Thredbo has been a year round resort for a long time with a comprehensive program of events tailored to both young and old ranging from guided walks to tennis and golf, bobsledding to white water rafting, horse riding to mountain bike riding, fishing to swimming and entertainment that includes a jazz festival and Shakespeare on the Green.

To read the full article Click here

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Autumn/Fall

Autumn

by David Bigwood

To some, autumn signals the beginning of the end. It’s all downhill from here. Short days leading inexorably to even shorter ones. Summer warmth and long days, are disappearing. Gloomy skies are on the horizon. Cold, wet, and even colder days to come.

William Cullen Bryant, the nineteenth century American poet, wrote, ‘The melancholy days have come, the saddest of the year’. One can almost feel him shuddering with distaste as he penned those lines.

But not all feel like Bryant. His compatriot James Whitcomb Riley exulted at the change of season when he wrote, ‘O it sets my heart a clickin’, like the tickin’ of a clock, when the frost is on the punkin and the fodder’s in the shock’. And, of course, England’s John Keats welcomed the ‘Seasons of mists and mellow fruitfulness’ with something akin to open arms.

To read the whole essay/article, go to http://davidbigwoodpublishing.blog/writing/autumnfall/

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Welsh Rarebit by the River — an article by David Bigwood

Welsh Rarebit by the River

by David Bigwood

“Welsh Rarebit, please and a pot of tea.” After all, when in Rome etcetera and when in the tea room of Tu Hwnt I’r Bont (Beyond the Bridge) on the banks of the River Conwy in Llanrwst then Welsh Rarebit — or Welsh Rabbit as it has been called — seemed to be the way to go. However, whether this cheese dish is originally Welsh seems unclear although the Welsh apparently have had a taste for cheese going back many centuries. In fact, in 1542 the first record of cheese being cooked does come from the Principality. My cousin, a one time resident of North Wales, assured me that the dish was tasty and was certainly not rabbit.

Having settled on my lunch it was time to survey my surroundings. I was intrigued to see several marks on a post near our table which showed the river levels reached by various floods. Had I been sitting where I was when the water came in I would have been, depending on which year it was, wet to the knees, soaked to halfway up my chest or having difficulty keeping my head above water.

To read the full article click on http://davidbigwoodpublishing.blog/writing/welsh-rarebit-by-the-river/