I got up at 5:30 on Sunday morning and headed out to Collaroy for some dawn photography at the ocean rock pool there. The weather had been overcast and showery on Saturday, with more of the same forecast for Sunday, but you can never really tell what it’ll be like for a shooting session until you get there, so I persevered, despite it looking gloomy and rainy when I got up. It rained the entire way there in the car, and I was fearing we’d have to just sit in the car for an hour before heading off for a breakfast somewhere.
When we got there, it was still dark and the rain had cleared to a very light drizzle, so I braved it with the help of an umbrella to keep the camera dry. There was a swimmer already in the pool, getting some laps in. I got about half a dozen shots in before the rain started getting heavier, forcing me to retreat back to the car. We sat there for about half an hour, watching it tumble down, as the sky slowly lightened from black to dark grey. As we waited, several cars and vans pulled up next to us, with guys getting out to survey the surfing conditions. Some took one look and headed away again. One guy stood staring at the ocean for about 20 minutes, brooding under a golf umbrella, trying to come to a decision. One or two grabbed their boards and headed out into the surf.
Eventually the rain slowed again. I ventured out and it quickly slackened off enough to take more photos, without needing an umbrella. The sunlight was giving some texture to the looming clouds by then, and I think I got some decent shots. The rain held off and the clouds began to break up slightly, allowing glimpses of sky. A dozen or so surfers plied the waves beyond the pool, and a procession of swimmers – almost all of them elderly men – arrived at the pool for their daily constitutional.
The concrete surrounds were slick with puddles of rain, and the surf was up a bit, washing over the seaward side of the pool, and getting my feet wet with seawater as I walked around with my gear. It wasn’t the best sunrise shooting session, but it was well worth it. At 7:30 or so we packed up and headed to a nearby cafe for some breakfast and to continue our early start to the day.