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Mood at Waipapa Point Lighthouse

Waipapa Point Lighthouse in the Catlins at sunrise and sunset

Waipapa Point is in the Catlins, and is one of the southern most points of the South Island. It faces south, looking out to Foveaux Strait, the body of ocean that separates the South Island from Stewart Island. The lighthouse built at Waipapa Point was erected after a shipping disaster in the late 1800s that claimed the lives of 131 people. The area is wild and windswept, and home to numerous seals and sea lions that scatter themselves over the rocks and land around the lighthouse. Given its position, the lighthouse is great for sunrise, sunset, astrophotography and aurora photography should the lights show. 


Believe it or not, just an hour before this photo was taken, we had been treated to a pretty pink sunrise with high scattered cloud. As we packed up and began the walk back to the car, the cloud was thickening threateningly overhead. As I neared the car park, I glanced over my shoulder and saw this scene. The sun, still low in the sky, was hitting the lighthouse, as the dark clouds gathered behind. I popped my zoom lens on and zoomed right in for this shot. A little different to what I normally shoot, but I really like it!

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