Lake Annecy

We left Lake Lucerne, headed over the alps and after a twisty-turny mountain drive into France we made our way to another lake: Lake Annecy. The difference was stark: earlier in the day I’d thrown a snowball at Holly in temperatures around freezing up a mountain pass, but when we arrived at Annecy it was sunny and seasonably warm. Like most of our overnight stops, we parked up at the hotel, unloaded some stuff and then went out for a walk to explore the town we’d found ourselves in and to get some dinner. And what a beautiful place we’d found ourselves in.

f/11, ISO 100, 24mm (HDR)
f/11, ISO 100, 24mm (HDR)

The water of Lake Annecy was crystal clear. Standing at the water’s edge I could see my shadow on the lakebed.

1/50sec, f/11, ISO 100, 24mm
1/50sec, f/11, ISO 100, 24mm

And photographing the water at a more traditional angle, I got a shot that might work pretty well as a desktop background.

1/500sec, f/4, ISO 100, 105mm
1/500sec, f/4, ISO 100, 105mm

On the bank of the canal that cuts through the town of Annecy into the lake itself, we found a number of people staring at something near the water. We got closer and found a tiny mouse clinging to the embankment.

1/800sec, f/4, ISO 100, 105mm
1/800sec, f/4, ISO 100, 105mm

Someone’s attempt at lowering a stick for the little guy to clamber up only served to spook him and he jumped into the water to try swimming across to the other bank – something on par to a human swimming the channel.

1/200sec, f/4, ISO 100, 105mm
1/200sec, f/4, ISO 100, 105mm

Unfortunately in the river were some coots who seemed quite intent on eating him.

1/100sec, f/5.6, ISO 100, 300mm
1/100sec, f/5.6, ISO 100, 300mm

The poor little mouse swam in all directions trying to avoid them but they kept nipping at him. With the crowd egging him on the coots realised the public opinion was against them and they eventually gave up, leaving him to swim on alone.

1/125sec, f/5.6, ISO 100, 300mm
1/125sec, f/5.6, ISO 100, 300mm

After surviving for so long against the coots, the mouse was disoriented, tired and struggling to stay afloat. Which is when the final twist of the tale showed up.

1/125sec, f/4, ISO 100, 70mm
1/125sec, f/4, ISO 100, 70mm

After that sailed through, there was no sign of the mouse. We’d lost sight of him before the boat came along so we’re not certain what happened to him. It’s probably better for everyone to assume that he made it out alive.

After waiting a bit to see if we could see him, we continued exploring the town. The late afternoon sun, the clear blue water and the architecture all combined to make for a good looking place.

1/640sec, f/4, ISO 100, 24mm
1/640sec, f/4, ISO 100, 24mm
1/400sec, f/4, ISO 100, 24mm
1/400sec, f/4, ISO 100, 24mm

The latter view is the one we enjoyed as we sat outside a restaurant eating some dinner.

A bit further up the canal there was a miniature waterfall thingy obviously used to control the flow of the water because it has some sort of mechanism next to it.

1/100sec, f/4, ISO 100, 67mm
1/100sec, f/4, ISO 100, 67mm

There was a fair amount of wildlife on the canal, including a swan. As it tried to take off, I was in shutter priority shooting mode taking pictures of the waterfall. The resulting shot wasn’t what I intended to capture but I like the result regardless.

1/10sec, f/20, ISO 100, 105mm
1/10sec, f/20, ISO 100, 105mm

I quickly flicked over to aperture priority, my usual shooting mode, to capture the shot I was going for. Fortunately swans need quite a long run-up to get airborne.

1/250sec, f/4, ISO 100, 105mm
1/250sec, f/4, ISO 100, 105mm

In the centre of the canal was a building. This is where I turn to the power of Wikipedia to see what it is, which tells me it is the Palais de l’Isle, built in 1132 and has spent time as a residence, an administrative headquarters, a courthouse and a jail.

f/11, ISO 100, 24mm (HDR)
f/11, ISO 100, 24mm (HDR)

What of the elements I like the most about this shot is the lighting of the people in the bottom left.

I found another swan on the canal. With the sunning creeping lower in the sky I liked the lighting on him too.

1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 100, 105mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 100, 105mm

We continued our wander through the town and soon found ourselves back on the lakeside.

1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 250, 24mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 250, 24mm

We looped around the lakeside and along a short canal which was more of a boat park. With the sun getting lower in the sky the lighting continued to be lovely.

1/40sec, f/18, ISO 500, 28mm
1/40sec, f/18, ISO 500, 28mm
1/100sec, f/11, ISO 500, 24mm
1/100sec, f/11, ISO 500, 24mm
1/640sec, f/4, ISO 500, 58mm
1/640sec, f/4, ISO 500, 58mm

We retired to our hotel for a bit to relax, and neutered back out again later when it was dark, mainly to get a shot of the Palais de l’Isle at night.

8sec, f/13, ISO 100, 24mm
8sec, f/13, ISO 100, 24mm

The next morning we woke and went for a walk to get some breakfast. This game me a change to photograph the Palais de l’Isle by the morning light.

1/125sec, f/13, ISO 100, 24mm
1/125sec, f/13, ISO 100, 24mm

I also took the shot in portrait, which worked quite nicely in getting the reflection of the building in the water.

1/125sec, f/13, ISO 100, 24mm
1/125sec, f/13, ISO 100, 24mm

We had breakfast – one of the best breakfasts we had on the holiday, in fact, because we found somewhere that offered us toast, bacon and eggs, staples of a proper breakfast and yet things hard to find in European breakfasts. Strange we found them somewhere less touristy where less people spoke English. The breakfast wasn’t just popular with us.

1/80sec, f/4, ISO 100, 105mm
1/80sec, f/4, ISO 100, 105mm

After breakfast we went for another bit of a walk around.

1/60sec, f/11, ISO 100, 24mm
1/60sec, f/11, ISO 100, 24mm

In the morning light, we could see a lot of the things that had found their way to the bottom of the clear waters of the canal.

1/50sec, f/11, ISO 100, 105mm
1/50sec, f/11, ISO 100, 105mm
1/50sec, f/11, ISO 100, 105mm
1/50sec, f/11, ISO 100, 105mm

The harsher light made the scenery look all the more impressive.

f/11, ISO 100, 40mm (HDR)
f/11, ISO 100, 40mm (HDR)
1/1600sec, f/4, ISO 100, 24mm
1/1600sec, f/4, ISO 100, 24mm

With our walk complete and our breakfast settled, we got in the car for another few hour jaunt where we would once again leave France behind and enter yet another country on our tour.


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Related Posts:

Over the Alps
Lake Lucerne
Basel

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