Wind and sunny spells were forecast, and so I considered that the chances were good that some brave souls might venture on the lake at Brogborough to surf the wind despite the air temperature being way lower. As I approached I caught glimpses of the stretch of water, but no signs of windsurfers and began to think that perhaps my surmise was wrong, but as I turned into the entrance I saw that the car park was not empty.
I then saw Tony Tiffen, but as I was wandered to the foreshore sans camera, I saw no one on the water, but a few boards close to the edge; so there was a possibility of action. I then strolled over to the main hut where inside I spotted a couple of wet-suited figures talking and eating, and joined them to learn that they had in fact been out much earlier and were due out again very shortly, so I left them as they discussed who was faster and that a race might be imminent. I hastened to grab my camera and assemble it with the gimbal head, but they were far quicker, and by the time I was ready and set up they were a good distance away. In order to hep me in assessing the shots I chose to set up CamRanger, so the iPad was propped up in my camera bag alongside me, and as took the first shots, I was able to view the results on the iPad screen rather than the camera back.
Initially I chose to shoot from the bank, not too far from the slipway the windsurfers launched from, but at their closest the surfers were too distant, so I shortly gathered my kit up and headed to the Ampthill Anglers’ stretch of waterfront to the left and beyond the car park where again I chose a low angled viewpoint right down close to the shore. I was also shielded more from the wind here, which meant I could withstand the cold for longer, bearing in mind unlike the surfers were exercising, I was clutching cold metal and sat still.
I stayed there for a while before returning when the clouds overhead began to look menacing of a possible downpour, and I thought it preferable to be closer to shelter. Fortunately, the clouds passed without a drop of rain, so after a spell doing more shooting from a spot midway between my previous locations. It was during this spell that I got chatting to an ex-surfer whose wife very kindly offered me a warm cup of tea and duly returned with one a few minutes later. After shooting from here for a time I went into the shelter of the reception area and ordered a bacon roll, and I listened to the banter of derring-do from the earlier pair. I had taken a bare couple of bites from my roll, when I lost sight of my plate and asked around whether anyone had moved it off the sofa – one of the wet-suited protagonists then asked whether I had eaten anything of it to which I responded, “Just two bites” and he said “I just removed a plate which I spotted a dog had been sniffing at a crumb, and took it off him and put it on the hatch.” I thought for a moment they were taking the Mick, but soon realised the dog had in fact got the better of me as I had been concentrating on my gear and their banter! Very generously, I was offered another one.
I went out for one last spell of shooting before leaving.