enough

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enough last won the day on 22 June 2016

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  1. Ann, where in Sabah are you going to? Is it Sukau?
  2. Thanks for the kind words Dallas. I had seen Ann commenting that she was going, it was actually one of the reasons I wrote it.
  3. The island of Borneo is essentially divided into two parts – Sabah, which is Malaysian Borneo and Sarawak, which is Indonesian. In addition, the tiny nation of Brunei is squeezed into 5000 square km on the West Coast of the island. The Danum Valley Conservation Area is approximately 400 sq kilometres of virgin rainforest located on the eastern side of Sabah. The most common way of getting to the area is on a 2 and half hour drive from Lahad Datu and the only place to stay is at the Borneo Rainforest Lodge (BRL). I have been meaning to do a write-up on the place because it really was sensational and should be on your list. The Lodge: We stayed in a “deluxe” room, because we wanted a view over the river. It was worth waking early (5.45am to 6.00am) and keeping a close eye out on what is happening outside. Every morning we did this, we saw amazing stuff. No dressing up required for meals, it is a very chilled place. It is barefoot or socks only in the dining / bar area (to keep shoes & thongs, which are likely covered in mud, out). We got a private guide and it was definitely worth it. You are in control of whatever you want to see or do and when you do it. Yes, they have a plan and undirected they will follow it, but you can vary it (including time and location etc) and you certainly then control how long you do, or don’t, stay watching some particular thing / animal. If there are things you especially want to see (e.g. birds) they will focus on that. Similarly if there is something you don’t want to see (e.g. tarantula) they will avoid it! They have great, great, food at the lodge! A huge selection of both western & Malaysian. I am sure we actually put on weight despite the amount of walking. Our room was basic, but fine. There is no air conditioning, but it really is cool enough with the smart room design & fans etc. They advise you to keep the lights off if you are not there, which we did, and had no problems with bugs in the room. The lounge / dining area is pretty fancy by comparison. You could take a small umbrella to use when trekking instead of putting on a rain jacket or poncho. They have big umbrellas in each room for getting to and from the lodge area. Some kind of dry bag could be good to take walking to put bino’s or camera gear in if it rains, because when it rains, it really rains! Take a torch for night walks We swam in the river – a great swimming hole is a short walk away from the lodges. We did not see anyone else swimming, but they encourage you to do it, so it is not an issue (and we will swim anywhere). When the river is higher they give you the option of going tubing down it. There are lots of bugs, so insect repellent is a must. We only saw one leech the entire time we were there, but we also only had rain on one afternoon. It would be a very different story if it had been raining more often. We were strict about always wearing leech socks (with insect repellent sprayed around the top) when we went out, so I know this helped. Other people there either did not wear leech socks at all, or only sometimes and they sometimes got leeches and sometimes not. Trekking: We were there five days. We spoke to people who were leaving after 2 (what they had booked for, not because they didn’t like it) who said they were happy to go as they either didn’t see a lot, or had seen what they were after (I assume Orangutan). I would have happily stayed longer. The longer we were there, the more we did, the more we saw. On this theme, if you are up for it, try and get out early (say a 6.00am or 6.30am start). Not only is it cooler, but the animals are more active. You have a chance of seeing the last of the nocturnal animals going home and you see all of the day one’s starting their day and looking for food etc. A typical day is a morning walk, which is the long one, starting anywhere from 6.00am to 8.30am and getting back anywhere from around 10.30am (if you are out early) to 11.30am – so, a 3 to 4 hour walk. Follow this with lunch, a chill out, swim, reading etc and then out for another walk at 3.30pm. The afternoon walk gets you back around 5.30pm. We also did one night walk (sensational) and one night drive (we did not see much) – but I would recommend doing both. We were going to do another night drive or walk, but got caught up doing other stuff with the guides back at the lodge. The walking tracks run the gamut of boardwalk to rutted dirt and, if the guides spot something special, “off road” you go. There is a fantastic canopy walk and there are swing bridges over the rivers – scary if you are that way inclined. Sturdy shoes will give you a better experience. If it rains, they better be water proof. Some of the wildlife: Orangutan... Spiderhunter.. Grey Racer.. Crested Fireback View full article
  4. Danum Valley, Borneo

    The island of Borneo is essentially divided into two parts – Sabah, which is Malaysian Borneo and Sarawak, which is Indonesian. In addition, the tiny nation of Brunei is squeezed into 5000 square km on the West Coast of the island. The Danum Valley Conservation Area is approximately 400 sq kilometres of virgin rainforest located on the eastern side of Sabah. The most common way of getting to the area is on a 2 and half hour drive from Lahad Datu and the only place to stay is at the Borneo Rainforest Lodge (BRL). I have been meaning to do a write-up on the place because it really was sensational and should be on your list. The Lodge: We stayed in a “deluxe” room, because we wanted a view over the river. It was worth waking early (5.45am to 6.00am) and keeping a close eye out on what is happening outside. Every morning we did this, we saw amazing stuff. No dressing up required for meals, it is a very chilled place. It is barefoot or socks only in the dining / bar area (to keep shoes & thongs, which are likely covered in mud, out). We got a private guide and it was definitely worth it. You are in control of whatever you want to see or do and when you do it. Yes, they have a plan and undirected they will follow it, but you can vary it (including time and location etc) and you certainly then control how long you do, or don’t, stay watching some particular thing / animal. If there are things you especially want to see (e.g. birds) they will focus on that. Similarly if there is something you don’t want to see (e.g. tarantula) they will avoid it! They have great, great, food at the lodge! A huge selection of both western & Malaysian. I am sure we actually put on weight despite the amount of walking. Our room was basic, but fine. There is no air conditioning, but it really is cool enough with the smart room design & fans etc. They advise you to keep the lights off if you are not there, which we did, and had no problems with bugs in the room. The lounge / dining area is pretty fancy by comparison. You could take a small umbrella to use when trekking instead of putting on a rain jacket or poncho. They have big umbrellas in each room for getting to and from the lodge area. Some kind of dry bag could be good to take walking to put bino’s or camera gear in if it rains, because when it rains, it really rains! Take a torch for night walks We swam in the river – a great swimming hole is a short walk away from the lodges. We did not see anyone else swimming, but they encourage you to do it, so it is not an issue (and we will swim anywhere). When the river is higher they give you the option of going tubing down it. There are lots of bugs, so insect repellent is a must. We only saw one leech the entire time we were there, but we also only had rain on one afternoon. It would be a very different story if it had been raining more often. We were strict about always wearing leech socks (with insect repellent sprayed around the top) when we went out, so I know this helped. Other people there either did not wear leech socks at all, or only sometimes and they sometimes got leeches and sometimes not. Trekking: We were there five days. We spoke to people who were leaving after 2 (what they had booked for, not because they didn’t like it) who said they were happy to go as they either didn’t see a lot, or had seen what they were after (I assume Orangutan). I would have happily stayed longer. The longer we were there, the more we did, the more we saw. On this theme, if you are up for it, try and get out early (say a 6.00am or 6.30am start). Not only is it cooler, but the animals are more active. You have a chance of seeing the last of the nocturnal animals going home and you see all of the day one’s starting their day and looking for food etc. A typical day is a morning walk, which is the long one, starting anywhere from 6.00am to 8.30am and getting back anywhere from around 10.30am (if you are out early) to 11.30am – so, a 3 to 4 hour walk. Follow this with lunch, a chill out, swim, reading etc and then out for another walk at 3.30pm. The afternoon walk gets you back around 5.30pm. We also did one night walk (sensational) and one night drive (we did not see much) – but I would recommend doing both. We were going to do another night drive or walk, but got caught up doing other stuff with the guides back at the lodge. The walking tracks run the gamut of boardwalk to rutted dirt and, if the guides spot something special, “off road” you go. There is a fantastic canopy walk and there are swing bridges over the rivers – scary if you are that way inclined. Sturdy shoes will give you a better experience. If it rains, they better be water proof. Some of the wildlife: Orangutan... Spiderhunter.. Grey Racer.. Crested Fireback
  5. Thomas, that is not a reply, that is an education, thank you for this.
  6. Fantastic Alan. Like you, if I find them they are usually an immovable spine ball! Great work.
  7. Alan, they are magnificent birds. I have been lucky enough to see them in Tassie and given their status their, I count that as a plus. Yep, this would have been painful if it was in the wild. This shot was four frames later........ All I could feel was the wind as she went over my head.
  8. I took the 300/4 PF out to Healesville Sanctuary on Saturday, they do an incredible job in rearing endangered Australian animals as well as caring for the more than 2500 injured animals that are delivered to them each year. They do a "birds in flight" show each day and I thought it might be a good opportunity to test the AF capabilities of the lens. I have the superseded version of the lens, and whilst I love the IQ, the AF has always been found wanting in this kind of situation. Ok, three to share. #1 A Whistling kite - not so challenging #2 A Barking Owl - These guys are reasonable fast and hard to track across the people #3 The magnificent Wedge-tailed Eagle, Australia's largest raptor with a wing span over 2.8m (9 foot).
  9. I have had lots, but I am going to go with an Olympus Trip. Why? It belonged to my parents and I borrowed it to go on a school camping safari trip to the Australian outback, and from that trip began two lifelong love affairs - the deserted, harsh, magical outback of Australia and photography. I have never looked back.
  10. Mongo, great shots. I am pretty sure that your dandy is a Great Cormorant in breeding plumage.
  11. You are right Dallas, given when the rain came in the SA innings, it was pretty much all over then. Cannot say I am a big fan of the whole Duckworth-Lewis thing in that instance.
  12. Like them a lot Mike. Going to the world cup final tomorrow, should be a blast.
  13. Thanks for the comments and feedback guys. Scythanith - both aperture and ND filter - ND + f20, 6 second exposure - any longer than that and I was getting movement in the water on the left hand side and I was trying to hold that to contrast with what was happening on the right. Grief re the watermark? Yes, sometimes, doesn't worry me. AthurKing83 - I am sure we were close then. And yes, whilst it might look serene in this shot and I have been there plenty of times when it has been serene, it was a very crowded weekend. I had to wait a while to get it without people, but it is funny how the best light corresponds with dinner time and therefore everyone bailed! Alan, this bit of the river is pretty close to Sheepyard Flat. It is taken at Frys Flat, so the next one around about a 1.5km walk along the river.
  14. I have been going to this particular stretch of river for nearly 15 years and have never got a shot that I was really happy with. Last weekend we had three days there, enjoying the sun, relaxing & swimming in the river. Of course, there was photography as well.
  15. These are the same rules that apply in Australia - although they are airline rules, not imposed, and regulation of them does vary by airline. Things came to a head on one of the budget airlines in particular, who charged for everything other than carry-on and a small number of people were bringing on ridiculous amounts.