Stickle Ghyll

Two days ago I posted an image of The Langdale Pikes on the one good day of our few days in the Lake District. By the time we had finished lunch at Stickle Barn, the blue sky had been replaced by cloud. Due to all the rain in the previous few days, all the rivers and streams were running fast and it seemed the ideal opportunity to see what images I could capture of the waterfalls in Stickle Ghyll. (The word ‘Ghyll’ is a dialect spelling of Gill, meaning Stream.)

The path up Stickle Ghyll is a popular route, leading to Stickle Tarn in the heart of the Langdales. It’s a route I’ve travelled many times over the last fifty or so years.

And I wasn’t disappointed by the Ghyll. The best images came from low down although I did walk up a lot further to one of the main cascades.

_DS77799As usual I was minus tripod and without ND filters so it was a question of how slow a shutter speed could I get. The answer was ISO100, f22, 1/6sec @ 57mm (film equiv). How do I manage without a tripod, you are probably asking? There are always rocks, or trees that provide support. The camera fitted neatly onto a ledge, a firm hand to hold it steady – job done.

There was another photographer nearby, FX Canon and a hefty bulky tripod. He was there when I arrived and he was still there when I left, struggling with his footing, still searching for the right place to try and mount his tripod on the rather demanding terrain. No doubt in the pursuit of perfection, but all that effort and struggle would drive me mad. Each to his own, as they say.

Incidentally the Langdale valley has a long history, with artefacts dating back to the Neolithic area being found in this area. There’s a short introduction to this valley on Wikipedia if you are interested in knowing more. Click here to go to the page.


About LensScaper

Hi - I'm a UK-based photographer who started out 45+ years ago as a lover of landscapes, inspired by my love of outdoor pursuits: skiing, walking and climbing. Now retired, I seldom leave home without a camera and I find images in unexpected places and from different genres. I work on the premise that Photography is Art and that creativity is dependent on the cultivation of 'A Seeing Eye'. I'm not averse to manipulating images to produce derivatives that may sometimes be far removed from the original.
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21 Responses to Stickle Ghyll

  1. ShimonZ says:

    nice picture… congratulations on getting such results with minimal equipment.

  2. Perfect exposure Andy. I love the look of the flow of water. Well done…and without a tripod.

  3. Chillbrook says:

    A job done very nicely Andy!

  4. seekraz says:

    Very nice, Andy….I love the living water out there.

  5. Len says:

    Lots of silky water goodness Andy. Real impressed that this was hand/rock held.

  6. Nice job Andy, well done.

    When I was younger (and dafter) I did a gill scramble to Stickle Tarn all the way from the pub – lovely hot day thankfully, as we ended up completely soaked!!

  7. ehpem says:

    Nicely done – was this your Canon Gnn? The G15 in our household has a built in “ND” filter which knocks 2 or 3 stops off the exposure, but you still have to hold it still! I have been that guy with the tripod all too many times, and it drives me nuts too. Less so if my sole purpose is to take photos and not the walk, or the view or something else. Which I suppose is almost always the case when lugging a tripod.

    • ehpem says:

      BTW, I wonder what the connection between stickle and stickleback might be. Seems possible that there could be one.

      • LensScaper says:

        Interesting thought, and the answer is that I have no idea what ‘Stickle’ means. I googled it without assistance. It may be a dialect word from that region of the UK. Maybe someone reading this will provide the answer.

    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks Ehpem. No, not the Canon G10 but the Nikon D7000. Interesting news about an in-built ND filter in the G15. The only time I carry a tripod is when I am planning to use the 500mm Mirror lens. I find a Tripod inhibiting – I want the freedom to move around and ‘find’ the shot. Having the problem of adjusting the tripod legs every time I found a different place to shoot from would, I think, really break the feeling of ‘creativity’. I realise the downside is that I may lose a fraction of sharpness, but I’m prepared to sacrifice that for the freedom of movement. I rarely go out with a specific ‘target’ in mind. Mainly I’m out walking, or moving around a city and the images just ‘happen’.

  8. I really love long exposure pieces, the way the water takes on a fluid feel and the surroundings are so crisp, what a lovely juxtaposition!

  9. athyfoto says:

    What a wonderful and informative post. Lots of info in there. I do like the image you came away with too.

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