Friday was an early start to be at Egleton, by Rutland Water for BirdFair 2014. One of the primary reasons for the visit was to see whether I would be able to check out a lens that Tamron had recently brought out that covered the focal lengths of 150 - 600mm. I was hoping it might bring me larger images of kingfishers without too much cropping.
Another reason was to catch up with two photographers who were manning a stand to promote their Wildlife Photography Courses and some of their prints and photographs. I arrived early enough to be towards the front of the queue waiting for the 9 o’clock opening of the event, and it was not long before I found David Tipling on their stand, and we chatted till Chris Gomersall’s arrival a short time later. I discussed my plan to contemplate the purchase of the Tamron telephoto zoom as I was hoping there might be one I could handle and obtain a file from at Park camera’s stand. I soon left them to hopefully deal with hordes of eager photographers wanting to sign up for their courses.
At the Park Cameras stand they had both Nikon and Canon versions of the lens on each of the two marques of camera body, and they carried a stock for sale. I was able to put my own camera body on one to take a few sample images to give me an assessment of the quality I might expect, and the results impressed me enough to take the plunge and buy one. Later after committing the deed, I returned to Chris and David on their stand, and whilst there was greeted by a photographer with whom I had once worked, yet not seen since 1970! He recognised me, but it took me a moment to realise who he was – Robert Paskin – forty-four years! We chatted awhile and exchanged cards, said our goodbyes, and I headed back south, looking forward to a visit to either a reservoir or a lake to give the lens a proper test.
Brogborough Lake won the day, as it allowed me a longer rest, and Saturday found me setting up the 5D MkIII on a gimbal head at the water’s edge as a few surfers took to their boards. It proved to be a poor location as I could not see their faces due to the wind and sun direction, so I set off through the woods to position my self better, and stayed there till late afternoon, before grabbing a bacon buttie and a welcome cup of tea. The real work would begin when I began processing the images back at base…