Crowdy Reservoir, Bodmin Moor

January 23, 2016

Last night, I made a huge mistake. In an attempt to catch the starlings' murmurations on Bodmin Moor, I searched for a possible photo at Crowdy Reservoir but found myself surrounded by horrible marshland. I was up to my knees in thick, muddy water and failed to make the most of a totally unique sunset. However, I was able to scout some alternative locations to capture the starlings and found a good spot for this morning's sunrise.


After arriving at the reservoir, I found a small slipway. Although it made for good leading lines, it just wasn't that attractive and didn't suit the beautiful location. Instead, I chose a more minimal composition. I had missed most of the nice light but I still really liked the fast moving clouds.




In the search for another location, I moved up the road and parked in a convenient "passing place" (trying not to take up too much space). A number of styles made fence jumping much easier and reassured me that I was allowed to walk through the fields I was walking through. I found the perfect composition but, by this time, the light was just terrible. The sun was bright and my camera was pointing directly at it so I decided to leave and get some breakfast. However, not long after I left, I saw more clouds blowing over and knew it would be worth returning. Clouds are great because they even out the light. In this case, they were thick enough to block out the sun and reduce the horrible reflections on the surface of the water. 


Throughout the shoot, I used a long shutter speed to soften the harsh textures in the reservoir and to stretch out the clouds. I like that there's still a small amount of texture in the water and really like that you can see patterns in it caused by the wind in the photos above.



Interested in going? Crowdy Reservoir can be found near Davidstow Airfield - a cool location in itself. A signposted road will lead you to a more accessible side to the reservoir where you'll find a car park, a relatively small dam and large fields home to horses and sheep. Possible locations for trout fishing and bird watching can also be found from this side of the reservoir.


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