Sounds of birds chirping woke me from a deep sleep after more than ten hours on the road a few hours earlier. The journey to North Carolina from Pennsylvania was eventless and the traffic minimal for a Sunday before a holiday. Even though birds were chirping, it was very dark outside. Why? The sound of birds was my alarm sound and not the sound of the ‘real’ birds welcoming a sunrise. Looking at my phone where the bird sounds originated, I noticed the temperature outside was slightly above 32 degrees. Didn’t the weather folks know this was a beach town in the south and this temperature is reserved for the north? Rubbing sleep from my eyes, I got ready for a cold sunrise on the beach thinking, all of this for a photo? Yes, it was a cloudless night and the sun was predicted to rise three hours from now in all of its majestic glory and warmth (:D).
The car was covered with drops of ice and the thought of running back into the hotel and under the warmth of a blanket raced through my head. Maybe I should enter a rehab program for photographers that are crazy? The car warmed up and the heated seats were a welcome to a chilled body making the short ride to the beach easier.
Navigating my way toward Wrightsville Beach provided a new display of lighted decorations. Maritime figures such as mermaids, dolphins, and more were on many of the light poles providing a holiday look to the town. Few people were on the streets this early on a brisk morning. I drove by a few runners dressed in warm running outfits who might need a rehab program similar to the one I need for crazy folks who go out in the early morning on a cold November day.
Finding a parking spot near Johnnie Mercer’s Pier was easy with quick access to the beach. There were a few walkers and workers cleaning up the area for the day’s activities.
“If you want to be reminded of the love of the Lord, just watch the sunrise.”
― Jeannette Walls,
Before the Sun rose, the sky was filled with great color!
As anticipated, the early morning sky was filled with bright stars and a beautiful sky. I walked along the beach near Johnnie Mercer’s Pier and found a few spots that would provide a great sunrise image. Huddled near the tripod and camera, I waited until the sky started to change colors and I was not disappointed. Experimenting with a few different settings on the camera with the intent to ‘freeze’ the water and create a glow in the sky.
Two plus hours passed from the time I arrived at the beach and a faint orange glow peaked the horizon providing a slight mist and fog like effect over the water. I could hear real birds in the distance but most remained huddled around each other staying warm.
A lady gathering sea shells walked the beach dress similar to me in a few layers of clothes and warm gloves while a few others ran to the beach, grabbed a quick sunrise image and immediately jogged to their respective cars to escape the cold morning air.
The time spent was rewarded with a beautiful sunrise that is fully appreciated after the anticipation. The sun seems to creep up to the horizon then in all of its glory, rises providing light and heat.