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Photography has changed the way I see the world around me.

Through it I discover new things and rediscover old ones. Like my island, New Caledonia.

This blog is just me sharing my world through my photography.

Hope you enjoy.

Posts tagged yate
NÉOCALLITROPSIS REFUGE FALLS

Cockington Miniature Village was the last of my photos from Australia. And even though I’m heading to New Zealand this weekend, I won’t be sharing photos from there but from home, New Caledonia. The reason being I don’t have a laptop to edit my photos on the go. I promise you’ll get to see them as soon as I get back in a couple of weeks though.

Néocallitropsis Refuge Falls is located in the Yate municipality in New Caledonia. A small waterfall ending in a nice waterhole, especially appreciated after a long walk. A few of us decided to hike the first stage of the GR NC1. Which is a fourteen kilometre hike that starts from the Prony refuge in Baie de la Somme (Mont Dore) and ends at the Néocallitropsis refuge (Yate). The refuge (hut) is located just off to the left of this photos. The hike doesn’t loop so either you retrace you steps back or drop a second car near the Néocallitropsis refuge to head back to the start once finished. I stayed the night in hopes of capturing a couple of sunset and sunrise photos. Unfortunately I missed out on sunset. I drove a couple of ladies and their dog, who thought the track looped, back to Prony refuge. By the time I got back, all the beautiful light had vanished and rain clouds were rolling in. It poured down pretty much all night so a shot of the stars didn’t happen either. I woke up to an overcast and drizzling morning. I want to pack up and head home but I didn’t know when I was going to be back here. I told myself “You’re here now, make the most of it. Go home with at least one photo.”. It stopped raining long enough for the ten minute walk back to the refuge (I didn’t anticipate the bad road to the refuge so I camped next to my car) and take a couple of photos before it started raining again. I got back to the car drenched but happy with myself for not giving up earlier.

Getting the long exposure time that I wanted for this photo wasn’t difficult with the lack of light from the overcast skies. The small aperture to get everything in focus helped as well. My aim was to get a silky smooth waterfall and it’s exactly what I got.

Never give up. You never know what lies in store.

1.3 sec @ ƒ/11, 55 mm, ISO 100

SCOUTING THE DAM

I went down to the Barrage de Yaté (Yate Dam, New Caledonia) to scout the area for a possible photograph for a photo contest I'd like to participate in next month. The Easter weekend seemed to be the perfect time because there was going to be a Blue Moon. I decided to camp overnight in hope of getting a photo of the dam at sunset, at midnight lit by the moon and sunrise. Multiplying my chances of capturing at least one photograph for the contest. Unfortunately, the weather wasn't quite up for it.

Sunset was ok but very cloudy and not a lot of colour in the sky. The sun barely broke through the clouds and, I think, those were the best shots I came home with. After a couple of hours of sleep, I got up for the moonlight shots. I was hoping the full moon would illuminate the lake and maybe capture a few stars at the same time but that wasn't to be. Too many clouds over the lake. Though the full moon was in site where I was, she wasn't illuminating the lake. I waited a while in hope that would change but it started to cover up and rain. So I headed back to my campsite. Four hours later I got up for the sunrise shots but ended up staying in my sleeping bag. No, I wasn't lazy. Strong wind and heavy rain was pounding my tent. It stopped almost three hours later, which I took advantage to quickly pack everything up. Though I missed sunrise by an hour, it looked like there was going to be a few breaks in the clouds so I headed down to the dam and setup my camera just in case. The sun briefly popped it's head out and I was able to capture a small rainbow but the clouds came rolling back in. I was about to head home when I remembered I had couple of welder's glasses. But that's a story for another time. Suffice to say, shortly after it started to pour down and that was that.

This photo was taken just after sunset and just before blue hour. I was using a remote I had just bought and though I'd take a selfie with it. I think you might see me in more photos.

RANDONNÉE SENTIER DE NETCHA
Hiking Netcha Trail

A couple of friends and I hiked the Sentier De Netcha (Netcha Trail) down in Yate. It's about an hour and a half drive south of Noumea, New Caledonia. The roads are good enough for a small car to make the journey. The scenery changes dramatically and is quite beautiful on the second half of the drive. There's plenty of free parking at the base site where the trail begins and ends. You can hike to the Chute De La Madeleine (Madeleine Falls) from here too.

The Netcha Trail is a loop that follows the peaks of the mountains situated on the opposite side of the road from the base site. It's a 9 km hike with a gradual elevation of about 550 m. On the South Province website and app it's considered as a "difficult" hike but my friend spoke to them and apparently they'll be changing the status to "average" difficulty. It took us 4 hours to do the loop and we stopped a number of times to takes photos, rest and eat.

Now, there's no shade nor water up there so be prepared. Take plenty of water and something to eat or snack on along the way. And never forget your hat and sunscreen. Even if it's cloudy. Trust me, I'm talking from experience. It's the number one mistake people make. They think just because it's cloudy and there's a nice breeze they won't get sunburned. Well think again. You may not feel it on the hike but once back home, you'll regret it.

So the hike takes you along the ridge line of the mountains and, as you can see, the views are just stunning. The wide expands of the plains, scattered lakes and the river, photo opportunities are endless. I would love to see what it's like here during sunrise or sunset. Oh and you can actually camp at the base site if you want to take a couple of days or more to visit the area. Anyway, I highly recommend hiking the Sentier De Netcha (Netcha Trail). I'll definitely return.

PLAINE DU CHAMP DE BATAILLE
Battle Field Plain

On the way back from a small hike in Prony with a friend and her two kids, we stopped at the Plaine Du Champ De Bataille lookout (Mont Dore, New Caledonia). On the opposite side of the road from there, are wind turbines, which the youngest of the kids is crazy about them.  So we went up close to them so she could touch and see how huge they are. She was in awe. It was on the way back down to the car that I saw this magnificent view with sunrays lighting up the valley below. I wish I had my tripod with me. I'm sure I would've gotten a cleaner image. I still love the photo though.

HIKE ON THE CHEMIN DES BAGNARDS
Hike On The Convicts' Path

Another little recon on this beautiful little path situated in the municipality of Yate (South Province, New Caledonia). The path starts at the Kanua Terra Lodge in Port Boisé Bay. About an hour an a half's drive from Noumea. The road down is descent enough for a small car to make the journey. You will hit a couple of bumpy dirt roads but not to the point of needing a 4X4. Beautiful view are to be seen and also the huge Goro nickel mine (which brings up mix feelings).

Once at the lodge, it's an easy going 5 km walk inland following the Trou Bleu River. The path is mostly shaded, which is great, as the sun can be quite harsh but humidity very high, nonetheless. The whole area is preserved with fishing, camping and fire prohibited. At the end of the path, if you wish, you can go farther (much farther) but you'll have to cross the river. Not a difficult task but a very slippery one. If you're not careful you'll get wet or, worst, hurt yourself. Otherwise you take the same path back to the lodge.

I'll definitely come back for sunrise and sunset shots but this is an area with no light pollution so it's perfect for astrophotography. 

Oh and I thought I'd add my friend's dog Lycan. Trained for security but loves to play.

UN VOLS TROISGROS

My best friend's step-father got his pilote license at the end of last year and proposed a flight from Noumea to Boulouparis, Thio, Yate and back to Noumea. I could say no to that. This was back in March and only now had to chance to edit the photos. I'm not very happy with the quality of the photos but the flight was fantastic. My fault for the photos not turning out right. My settings were off. I hope you enjoy these photos. I've got a few more to share later on.