The favourite advice of many photographers is to always have your camera with you. It's good advice! There have been many occasions in the past when I've left my camera at home only to kick myself when I've seen a great shot!
Of course, these days everyone has a camera with them on their phones. These can be excellent for capturing moments, and they can be great fun, but as a landscape photographer I can't go far without my DSLR & tripod! Hand on heart I don't take my camera everywhere (not grocery shopping, for example!), but it's a habit that I made a conscious effort to get into, and now it's second nature to grab my Low Pro backpack as I leave the house.
I've had two recent excursions when this habit really paid off & I thought I'd share the results with you.
My first photograph was captured on a flying visit to North Wales. I had to make a trip over to Bewts-y-Coed, where some of my Snowdonia photographs are on display in a B&B. It was a miserable day, pouring rain all day, and what seemed like no chance of seeing anything with such low cloud. I intended to make the round trip in an afternoon, but before leaving I put my bag in the boot of the car, as usual. As expected it was wet when I arrived, I spent maybe longer than I should having tea & a good chat! By the time I was ready to leave the rain had stopped, and there were a few breaks in the cloud appearing. So, instead of driving back out on the Conwy Road, I thought I would take a detour out to Capel Curig & the Ogwen Valley just to see whether the cloud had lifted from the mountains. It had lifted just enough to produce the shot below!
It was definitely the right decision to delay my return home!
The second occasion was only last week. On a very grey overcast & chilly Monday afternoon, I needed to get out of the house for a while & decided to go out for a walk. Once again my bag made it's way to the boot of my car, & I drove out in the general direction of the hills on the edge of the Peak District, above Macclesfield. I was undecided where I wanted to walk, but found myself driving close to Windgather rocks just outside Kettleshulme. I made the decision to stop a little further up the road & walk to the summit of Shining Tor. It's a lovely walk, there were plenty of grouse in the heather, & a couple of Buzzards hovering above. As I reached the summit of Shining Tor the sun broke through the grey cloud to highlight the hill below, and created this shot.
So, I'm joining the chorus of voices; whatever your camera is, think about it before you leave the house. It won't take any shots lying in drawer, or on the shelf in your house!
Oh, and a warm hat & pair of gloves are invaluable at this time of year :-)