Sunrise on Skipton Moor

This morning, at around 6am, I made my way in complete blackness to the top of Skipton Moor, a roughly hour-long walk uphill, in an attempt to see the sun rise over the moor. Before long I made it to the trig point marking the highest point of the nearby terrain, and there I waited in the cold wind. I was over an hour early for sunrise, and I am so glad that I was, because the twilight hour before the sun peeked over the horizon was incredible.

Sky over Moor 1
Sky over Moor 1
Sky over Moor 2
Sky over Moor 2
Sky over Moor Panorama
Sky over Moor Panorama
Two Cairns at Sunrise
Two Cairns at Sunrise

The sun, still below the horizon, cast light onto the clouds, resulting in a dramatic sky as a backdrop against a silhouetted landscape. In the last of these images (my favourite) I captured two timeless cairns, watching over this silent, yet dynamic landscape.

Eventually, however, the sun rose. Shining through the clouds, it gave the sky a fiery orange glow, contrasting against the cool blue of the rest of the sky.

Sunrise over Skipton Moor
Sunrise over Skipton Moor

Here the sun has an almost apocalyptic glow, emphasised even more by the contrast with the clouds. However, this breathtaking moment was not to last, for eventually the sun rose above the clouds, ending night, and beginning day.

To me, this is why sunrise and sunset are both such beautiful times of the day, and why they are so amazing to photograph. To photograph a sunset or sunrise is to take a moment which is temporary and make it permanent. It is an attempt to convey the emotion of watching a landscape like this transform in front of your eyes, and in this case, I hope I have succeeded.

I stayed awake all night for this, and now it is 2:30pm and I feel dead. I sat in the freezing cold for an hour, with nothing but the wind to keep me company. It was worth it.

-Jay

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