I’ve been to the Agas-Agas Bridge in Sogod, Southern Leyte on several occasions.

Currently holding the record of having the highest elevation of all bridges in the Philippines with a height of 292 feet above the ground, it is also the site where the longest zipline (almost a kilometer long) is located.

At this elevation, and when the weather feels like it, low-flying clouds would suddenly envelop the area giving it a scene not unlike being in another temperate country; certainly some place else other than in the Philippines.

And, no, in those times I was in the area, I’ve never had the chance to take some bird shots… until last Thursday, December 22, 2011… when a hornbill, locally known as Talusi, (three of them, actually) suddenly flew into view and perched herself high up in a tree close by where I was just taking snapshots of the general scene.

It was my first bird shot at Agas-agas. And a seldom-seen-in-the-wild Samar Tarictic Hornbill (Penelopides samarensis) at that!

Whew! Certainly a great Christmas gift for me!

Merry Christmas, everybody!!!

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I wasn’t expecting much when I first heard the news earlier this week about the coming lunar eclipse owing to the rainy weather prevailing in our area.

But, lo and behold – the skies cleared up last night!

And so with great haste I managed to set up my camera in what would be a tedious shoot for the next 2 hours or so! When I finally called it quits, the moon was directly overhead so that the camera position was already vertical! Looking at the viewfinder of a tripod-mounted camera positioned vertically is no joke. I was expecting a stiff neck upon waking up this morning hehe ;)

 

Composite above shows photos taken from 9:02PM-10:00PM. Relative moon positions are not accurate; presented here solely for graphical purposes.

Photo taken at 10:31:39 PM

Photo taken at 10:48:14 PM

Photo taken at 10:50:34 PM

All photos taken 10 December 2011 from calle Z Cafe, Tacloban City, Leyte, Philippines using Canon EOS  7D with EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM +1.4X Extender II.

 

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The first 2 days of December found us in Palompon, Leyte (again), no, not for another trip to their famed Kalanggaman Island (although, frankly, we would have loved it) nor for another kayaking stint.

This time it was for Palompon’s annual fiesta celebration with the inaugural launch of the municipality’s 1st Lawig Festival 2011 in honor of their patron saint, St. Francisco Javier.

The Lawig Festival name takes its foundation from the Bisayan word, “Lawig” – meaning, “to sail on” – which its founders and organizers envision to crystalize the Palomponganon’s relentless optimism, courage and fighting spirit in facing life’s challenges and opportunities for growth.

Organized and spearheaded by the Local Government Unit of Palompon, the 1st Lawig Festival was held December 02, 2011 and saw the participation of 12 colorful contingents, all from within its municipal jurisdiction.

Dancing to the tribal beat of their respective drum and bugle corps, the festival streetdancing parade promptly started at 7:00AM and snaked its way around town ending up at the wharf area where the final showdown competition was held.

Adjudged winners were:

Champion: Taberna National High School

2nd Place: Palompon Institute of Technology

3rd Place: LGU Palompon Contingent

Congratulations to everyone for the successful holding of the 1st Lawig Festival!

Above, 3rd placer LGU Lawig contingent

2nd Place: Palompon Institute of Technology

The Champions – Taberna National High School

VIEW MORE PHOTOS (83 PHOTOS) >>>

 

 

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I’ve always wanted to do a long, slow shutter speed, aerial, evening shot of the Roxas Boulevard stretch of Metro-Manila.

Our band, The Assembly, played for months in the late 70′s at El Camarote at  Holiday Inn, now Traders’ Hotel, right across the Cultural Center of the Philippines. And even if I was not into photography then, the early evening lights of the whole stretch of the boulevard viewed from the top floors of Holiday Inn had always fascinated me.

The opportunity came recently while I was doing a shoot for Pasay City and among the sought-after shots I wanted done was one to be taken early evening, atop Traders Hotel.

Alas, the weather wasn’t too kind! It had rained for a couple of days until that fateful day when we finally got the hotel clearance to climb right up to the roof deck of the hotel. I was barely starting to warm up after getting a proper orientation and a general feel of the stronger-than-usual winds when you’re on top of a tall building (we climbed a couple more levels from the 18th floor) when suddenly it started to drizzle!

Gosh! There wasn’t much time to go around the hotel’s roof deck to get all the possible angles!

So here’s what I just managed to shoot…

Better luck next time. :(

Photos taken 14 November 2011.

 

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