Well that went better than I thought.
On our late afternoon rambles up on the moors of Anglezarke Nicola and I have been treated to a fly by of gold and ghostly. The barn owl appears to be hunting over a set landscape so I decided to have a go at filming it for our next nature film.
I very nearly talked myself out of it for all sorts of reasons, not least because I’d be using my Canon 90D right at the far edge of its ability, especially with low light noise and dodgy focusing. But I headed for the moors nonetheless and, as if to taunt me, the owl was already up and about when I got to the forest edge at about an hour before sun down.
It perched on a post not a hundred yards from me. Trouble was my camera was in my backpack! How often does that happen!
Very gingerly, I dropped my rucksack, set up my tripod, mounted my 100 - 400mm with 2x converter, affixed my Canon before gently training my camera onto the bird. Only to see it fly off! Sod’s Law!
But at least it was out hunting so I trudged my way through the bogs to my chosen spot and waited through a couple of stinging rain showers and rainbow shows. Minutes before sunset the owl returned, not as close but at least I could get some footage for the film.
I was really excited to see the owl backlit, flying and diving on my lcd screen but had concerns about the focus. The 90D couldn’t hack it so I had to quickly switch to manual, only to find out I didn’t do much better.
Still I got some ok clips, and am spurred on to return tomorrow evening an hour or so earlier for another try.
There’s something about these moors that’s got under my skin. I don’t know what it is but I have a definite sense of coming home when I wander there. In fact as the darkness falls I am pulled to bed down under a lonely hawthorn and spend the night there. It’s been a while since I did that, so maybe I need to soon.
The river that races down the Clough was raging today, stained red by the peat through which it filters. Here’s a handheld 5 second shot courtesy of the excellent Spectre app on my phone.
The moors of which you speak have got under my skin too, and this shot shows all to see just why it's so special there.
I eagerly anticipate seeing the owl footage when it's shared and wish you luck getting the owl shots you're after in the future.
I find the moors have a will of their own and love to have their way with you. They are so addictive in a way for which there are no modern words. I dream them, and perhaps they dream me too. Thank you for your thoughts Dee, me and owl are having so much fun. In fact, I now know there’s a breeding pair!