Basin Head Beach - Clear Water Sand

The Best Beach in Canada believes that answer is Basin Head, located (N 46 22.853 W 62 06.590) on the eastern end of Prince Edward Island, roughly a 1 hour and 15 minute drive from Charlottetown. This title of #1 has had the local media buzzing. Here is what Vacay had to say:

For reasons scientists are still trying to figure out, this beach makes a strange swishing sound whenever the wind swirls or when a visitor walks on it. Tourism officials on Prince Edward Island suggest the reason may be because of the texture and consistency of the quartz sand. Nevertheless, the sound is a unique feature of a beach that has some of the warmest waters north of Florida. In summer, the water temperature will top 21 Celsius degrees (70 Fahrenheit) at Singing Sands and other sandy spots on PEI, which has more than 800 kilometres of beaches to explore.

Why This Beach Rocks: Some of the warmest waters in the northern hemisphere. The supervised beach is in a day-use (summer) park that has a play area, food, washroom, shower facilities, and the Basin Head Fisheries Museum.


Basin Head Beach - Clear Water Sand

Today’s Image – Singing Sands at Basin Head Beach

I have not yet made the drive to Basin Head this summer, but here is an image from the archives of this clear water beach on a foggy day.

A Day to Remember

Appreciating traditional darkroom printing is something I have difficulty relating to. I have many albums of 4×6 prints from every event of my childhood but it was not art. Photography was this little box with a button, that you pressed 24 times, mailed away a funny looking negative strip, waited a few weeks, and a nicely package envelope of prints would arrive – often with heads cut off disappointment. Photography was for documentation and I found it boring which kept me focused on my inks and paint brushes.

Fast forward to last week and I had the pleasure of receiving an invitation to Photo Moncton International. But after arriving, I was asked if I could help make sure the speakers had everything they needed for the projector and audio. The presenter of that night happened to be John Sexton – a master of darkroom film processing who still uses a 4×5 viewfinder in a fully non-digital workflow. He also proudly has technical and photographic assistant to Ansel Adams on his resume.

The few hours of setup, calibration and trial runs with John and his wife Anne Larsen, provided some interesting conversations and a small window into their world. As I stood there looking through this large 4×5 panel at an upside down image, with a black sheet over my head, the demonstration provided me with a much better appreciation and hands on experience to a little bit of photography history – even if I still don’t clearly understand the process from start to finish.

John’s talk that night found a good balance between his own photography, the approach to his own work, and the career he had with Ansel Adams was something I’ll not forget any time soon. So many stories to share, so little time.

Stanhope Beach, Prince Edward Island

Today’s Image – Stanhope Beach, Prince Edward Island National Park

It was a very wet PEI weekend as post tropical storm Andrea crossed over the province dumping between 30-90mms of rain at 40-70KMH winds. The gray skies and heavy overcast clouds kept me on the trails for the weekend but also provided a chance to experiment with some heavy contrast black and white. This image from Stanhope Beach, (N46 25.267 W63 06.067) in PEI National Park, was created at the tail end of what was left from Andrea. I like colours and I rarely present my images as black and white but maybe I should be trying it more often.

Fun in the Sky – PEI Aerial Photography

I spend alot of time looking at maps. Either it be paper or software, I like having that overview visual of any location I’m photographing. In fact – When the software I use to keep my images organized announced all the newest and latest features – I was most excited for the ability to tag images to a digital map. Having this overview is great but seeing it for yourself is a completely different experience and what can be better then flying over Prince Edward Island in a small 4 seater Cessna?

Holding out for good weather can be frustrating but I recently took to the skies for my first flight of 2012. Here are just a few of the images created in early July 2012.

I really need to do this more often.

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Golden Sand

The blue/yellow polarizing filter is something I rarely use but when I arrived at the beach and realized I had forgotten my standard neutral polarizer — that was as good of an excuse as any to add some color.

Today’s Image – Golden Sand

Sand ripples and reflections in Brackley Beach, PEI National Park.

Significant Changes

I routinely visit Covehead in PEI National Park and I still can’t believe how much can and has changed from year to year. What once was a sand dune, is now a clear view out to sea.

Covehead, PEI National Park

Today’s Image – New Stream at Covehead

A year ago and this stream did not exist. The lake (pond?) in the distance was not accessible and separated by a sand dune but today is part of the beach and connected to the Gulf of St. Lawrence. I do not have a great before image but if we compare it to this image of the Northern Lights looking in the opposite direction, you can get a sense of the separation. Using Google maps, we can still see at N 46 25.746 W 63 09.117 how isolated it was just last summer.