SKPC Springtrip to Connemara - South Kildare Photography Club

SKPC Springtrip to Connemara

written by Karin Weinzierl

From Aasleagh Falls to Kylemore Abbey and from Mayo to Galway… our spring trip to Connemara

Every year, SKPC tries to organize one or two trips away to different locations around Ireland or abroad. Our spring trip for this year was planned for the weekend from the 26th to the 28th April, and it was decided, that we would go back to Leenane, a picturesque village in a valley nestled under the Maamtrasna and the Maamturk Mountains on the Galway-Mayo border.

Some of our more experienced members in the club, who had already visited the area on previous club-trips, quickly became a very valuable source of information for our “newbies” in terms of where to go and what to take pictures of during their stay.

The majority of our participants arrived at the Leenane Hotel on Friday evening so we could start off our weekend with a delicious dinner. 18 club members in total, some accompanied by their partners, took part in the trip which made for a nice overall group size. Afterwards, the group gathered for a drink (or two) and the first plans as to what locations we wanted to visit started to emerge. Geographically Leenane is one of the best starting point for trips out to the beautiful landscapes of Connemara.

Well known (and photographed) locations such as Pinetree Island, Killary Harbour, Kylemore Abbey and the beautiful Aasleagh Falls are all within driving distance (with some as close as a mere 5 minute drive) and allowed us to enjoy a multitude of different image opportunities within a relatively short period of time. Due to the geographical closeness of one location to the other, visiting 5 to 6 different locations in one day was easily manageable (as was, as it would turn out, running back to the car within less than two minutes to take shelter from rain, hailstones and other not so favourable weather conditions...courtesy of storm “Hannah”.)

The Auld Bog Road

The Auld Bog Road

Billy Nicholls

In spite of the partially adverse overall weather conditions, Saturday turned out to be the best day for photographs that weekend, even though the weather was still fairly unpredictable. On the one hand, the winds were still very high which resulted in extremely fast cloud movements and rapid changes in light, but on the other hand, it also meant that having the camera on a tripod was very difficult, if not impossible.

Like on previous trips, the group split up into teams of 2 – 4 people to avoid having to argue over the “best” spot on location.

Overall, the time went too fast and everybody went home not only with a lovely set of images, but also with a bunch of treasured memories which could not even be dampened by the odd unfortunate happening such as a tow car being needed to put one of our members safely back on the road, or the total lack of beautiful colors at sunrise or sunset…

We did a “Show & Tell” at one of our club nights since then and it was very interesting to see how “different” images can be, even when they have been taken at the same location. At the end of the day, any photograph starts with the photographer’s eye catching something somewhere…

The gallery below shows a selection of the images taken on the trip by different members and it’ll give you an idea how “differently” we all saw the area around us.

A Sharp Intake of Breath

A Sharp Intake of Breath

Billy Nicholls

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