Tag Archives: Traveling

Apocalypse de St-Emilion, St-Emilion, France, Sept. 2020

While being on the way from Carnac to Biarritz, we stopped by at a town called Saint Emilion, some 50 km east of Bordeaux. Never heard of it before, the travel guide acknowledged it as a spot for its world famous wines and its medieval architecture. We haven´t been prepared for what to come – to say the least. The church has been tremendous, with its old paintings and frescoes, but walking through the side door into the cloister, we starred at a wall full of paintings of the Apocalypse of the New Testament. We were blown away by the beauty of the paintings, a modern interpretation of the Apocalypse of John – we had no clue at all what would await us around these holy walls. I´m not very much into surprises, but this one made my day. More info about this exhibition can be found here (in french): http://apocalypse-saint-emilion.com . Enjoy!

.

 

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

Tour de France, Nightscapes, Aug./Sept. 2020

Back from a three-weeks tour around France in Aug./Sept. 2020, traveling some 5700 km with my son and my trusted Sprinter van. Not to many nighttime shooting possibilities this time, but we got away with some cool locations. As always, nightscapes first. Enjoy!

.

Setting crescent Moon above the Channel…

.

Setting crescent Moon @ Cap Gries-Nez, with the lights of the south coast of England to the right…

.

Constellation of Cassiopeia @ Longues-sur-Mer…

.

Reflections @ Longues-sur-Mer…

.

Big Dipper and Arcturus @ Longues-sur-Mer…

.

Camper van parade @ Longues-sur-Mer…

.

Crepuscular rays after sunset @ Biarritz…

.

Full Moon setting in the morning, with Belt of Venus and Earth Shadow, looking towards Spain…

.

Nautical twilight @ Col d´Osquich…

.

Enjoying the show @ Col d´Osquich…

.

Saturn, Jupiter, Milkyway @ Lac des Gaves…

.

Saturn and Jupiter @ Chateau de Queribus…

.

Saturn, Jupiter, Milkyway @ Cirque de Navacelles…

.

Milkyway above the light polluted Cirque de Navacelles…

.

The beauty of the night sky – what better than that @ Cirque de Navacelles…

.

Mont Chaberton

Is there a more weirder thing than a fort on top of a 3130 m high mountain? While coming across images of Mont Chaberton late 2017, the destination for my next trip was set for the French Alps in August 2018. After a week of touring, I arrived in Fenils/I on a sunny Sunday afternoon. The weather forecast looked promising, so I packed my 20 kg backpack and hit the track around 06:00 pm, to avoid the hot afternoon sun. My plan was to arrive late at night on top of Mont Chaberton, to photograph the stars and the Milkyway and of course to spend the night up there. Around 10:00 pm, the weather started to change; clouds moved in, thunder and lightning followed. The benefit of traveling on your own: you don´t have to ask anyone where or when to go, what to do or what not to do. The downfall: you can´t ask someone for advice in a situation like this while being completely on your own. When the rain started at Clot des Morts at 2457 m, after four hours of hiking, I was still confident that the storm would pass as quickly as it came. The thunder was far away, some 25 seconds counting, and heading back was no option. But the further I went on, the rain got heavier and the thundering intervals shortened. So what to do?! Though this situation brought me to my limits, mentally speaking, I closed my eyes, and I decided: whatever would come to my mind first, I will do. And of course, some praying will help to. My intuition was to further go up and to find a spot to get shelter from the storm. Around 11:00 pm, I arrived at Col du Chaberton, 2650 m, the pass underneath Mont Chaberton. As I looked the way back, I saw clouds moving in up from the valley floor, dropping the sight down to zero within minutes. I thought everything is lost now. Luckily the clouds moved away as quickly as they came in and the same moment I spotted the ruins at Col du Chaberton, probably the remains of the former barracks of the fort. What a relief, just in time. I found a small shelter where I could change my cloth and meanwhile the thunder counting dropped down to three seconds. The place has been too small to lay down and sleep, so I had to wait another hour, around 12:00 pm, till the storm dispersed and I could put up my mat and sleeping bag on a flat spot around the ruins. At 04:00 am I got up to hit the last batch of the Mont Chaberton trail, just in time to witness the sunrise with its magical light. A night to remember for sure. Enjoy!

PS: I met some french fellows up there in the morning. One of the guys goes by the name of Ce Dric. I´m sorry, but I couldn´t find you on social media. If you ever come across this post, please drop me a note. Cheers!

View from Col Lauson, 2497 m, towards Mont Chaberton…

.

On track, late evening…

.

Looking back at sunset with the clouds coming in…

.

Shelter from the storm…but also a preferred spot by hikers to relieve oneself…

.

Thunder and rain passed, the stars came out…

.

Bivouac for a couple of hours after the rain had stopped…

.

Greeted on top of the mountain by a camp fire and some french fellows, minutes before sunrise…

.

Belt of Venus and Earth Shadow indicates the upcoming sunrise on the opposite side…

.

The artillery battery on top of Mont Chaberton…

.

Sunrise…

.

Artillery battery, Mont Chaberton…

.

Facing north-west @ sunrise…

.

Facing south @ sunrise…

.

Facing south-east @ sunrise…

.

Enjoying the show…

.

Can it get much weirder? A flattened mountain top with artillery batteries…

.

Forte Chaberton, 3130m…

.

Inside the fort…

.

Memorial stone, Mont Chaberton…

.

Memorial stone, Mont Chaberton…

.

Heading back on a sunny Monday morning…

.

Col du Chaberton, 2650 m…

.

Clot des Morts, 2457 m…

.

Col du Chaberton to the left…

.

The “Cracked Rock” to the right, along the old military road (start of construction 1898)…

.

One last look back, before the track hits the forest again…

.

Where the fun started: 14 km and 1500 m difference in altitude all the way up to Mont Chaberton, from the italian side at Fenils…

.