Rodney Campbell's Blog

Kurnell – Morning Rays…

by on Jun.22, 2014, under Life, Photography

Headed down to the southern side of Sydney to shoot sunrise at Kurnell with Gerry

Note: These photographs (especially the wider shots) look much better when larger – so click any of the images below to see larger versions in an inline overlay slideshow gallery viewer.

Kurnell is on the southern headland of Botany Bay with the eastern side of the peninsula being part of Botany Bay National Park. Kurnell is considered to be the birthplace of modern Australia, as it is the place where Captain James Cook landed on 29 April 1770. The area is dominated by industrial use, including an Oil Refinery and a Desalination Plant

Gerry and I however headed out to the eastern side of Kurnell above the cliffs with the Focus (FOCUS – Australia – Seascape & Landscape Photography) crew – we arrived quite early at 5:25AM (about 95 minutes before sunrise). We left the rest of the Focus group (who were planning to shoot at nearby Potter Point) and headed north along the cliffs past the Lighthouse to shoot at a nice open spot on the cliffs

We were looking for a spot with some nice still water pools near the edge of the cliffs so we could shoot out to sea before sunrise. As always we were hoping for some nice clouds but once again were disappointed with just some thick cloud right on the horizon. The clouds did bode well for some pre dawn pastels and that did not disappoint

40 minutes to sunrise and we’d made it to a location we’d seen on Google Maps just in time for the horizon to start blazing pretty red – it was out with the 3 stop reverse grad and the polariser and time to set in for some early twilight long exposures

Red vs Blue

Red vs Blue

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 20 mm, 102.00 sec at f/8, ISO 100

Half an hour till sunrise



NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 20 mm, 73 sec at f/11, ISO 160

With twenty five minutes till sunrise and Gerry asking me where the Seals were?!!…

We were hearing these relatively loud sort of snorting/sneezing noises and wondering what they were – Gerry went for a look over the edge and… Whales far down below – yeah we should have brought a long lens – the 24-70 just wasn’t going to cut it

Unfortunately we weren’t blessed with some colourful clouds spread over the sky this morning but with a band of clouds right on the horizon we were however getting some sweet but subtle morning rays in the sky

A Fan of Sunrise

A Fan of Sunrise

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 19 mm, 46 sec at f/11, ISO 100

Moving to another pool further back which had some nice small rocks in the water to add some extra interest to the foreground. I liked this little diagonal line of stones and after a few straight shots I figured it would also make for some decent silhouetted selfie reflections – the first a few minutes more than 15 minutes to sunrise and the second a touch under 15 minutes to go

Waiting for the Light

Waiting for the Light

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 19 mm, 13 sec at f/16, ISO 100

Dawn Watching

Dawn Watching

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 19 mm, 4 sec at f/16, ISO 100

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