Dubai to Rwanda

Today was all about movement from Dubai to Rwanda to photograph the Mountain Gorillas. Following a ticketing process at Ethiopian Airlines that was some of the most disorganized processing that I have ever seen, we were finally on our way to Addis Abba and then onward to Kigali Rwanda for our first overnight in Rwanda. Arriving at noon-ish in Kigali, we were met by the wonderful staff of Thousands Hills and quickly transferred to the Serena Hotel. Our final member of our team joined us about 8pm for a light snack then off the bed for our early rise the following morning. During our travel to Rwanda, we found ourselves reflecting on the fireworks that we had just witnessed and the great architecture that has captured my eye every time I visit Dubai and I just had to share some Dubai images before moving on to Rwanda.

The Atlantis Hotel on the Palm, Dubai – UAE
Nikon D4, 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 200mm, ISO 800, 2.5 sec at f/8.0

The Cayan Building in B&W, otherwise known as “Twisty”
Nikon D4, 24-70 f/2.8 @ 31mm, ISO 125, 1/200 sec at f/8.0

Cheers and Happy Photo’ing

Dubai Sets World Record for Fireworks – I was there

We made a fun stop at Dubai for two days on the way to leading another safari for Rwanda.  Photographing the Mountain Gorillas is always an intense rush for me.

Overlooking the Palm Jumeirah, we were treated to a front row seat for an incredible display.  Lasting only 6 minutes, Dubai beat the world record in the first 10 seconds (so they say).  Although I set up well in advance for this event, I was not prepared for the for the vastness of the event.  Yep, I selected the wrong lens.  I thought the major event was going to be around Atlantis.  Much to my surprise, it was right in front of me, spanning most of the palm. By the time I figured things out and changed the lenses and corresponding exposure, I decided to just sit back and take it all in.  Hard to beat the image from Dubai Media, with multiple locations, both land and air based.  Below is what we saw:

Cheers and happy photo’ing

Rwanda and Mountain Gorillas – Here We Come

After a very long night fighting a hard drive failure on my main computer, I’m off to Rwanda with a quick stop in Dubai.  As far as the computer is concerned, I am very thankful that I was able to do a full system resort from my most recent backup.  After all of the traumatic  starts and stops, I finally diagnosed the problem as a hard drive starting to fail.  I had SMART monitoring enabled but it did not catch the start of the failure. Backups saved me this time.

For this trip to photograph the Gorillas, I will be going very light with only two camera and two lenses.  Do to the low light conditions I will be working in, I selected my Nikon D4 and my D3s as the bodies.  For the glass, the Nikon 70-200 f/2.8 and the Nikon 24-70 f/2.8 will round out the kit.  I will be using a double camera strap by Black Rapid.  Having shot the Gorillas before, I will be making use of the auto-ISO feature on the bodies to keep my shutter speed high enough to avoid camera shake.

I’ll be blogging live from Rwanda thanks to the wonderful folks at XComGlobal.  XComGlobal offers WiFi internet access in more than 175 countieis worldwide.

Cheers and happy photo’ing.