MEET A PRO

Chasing Norwegian landscapes under the starlight

Ruslan Merzlyakov

Photographer from Denamrk

Chasing Norwegian landscapes under the starlight

Being a nightscape photographer is not an easy thing. It requires not only a beautiful shot of the night sky, but also an interesting foreground. Living in Denmark, where more than 60% of the country’s area are fields used for agriculture, I often find myself traveling to our neighbours; in a short 3 hours on a ferry you are on the south coast of Norway! 
This August I decided to visit the Norwegian fjords to do some hiking, while also photographing the Perseids, one of the most spectacular meteor showers with up to 140 meteors per hour. Some people told me that I would be disappointed during the trip, as the fjords is one of the rainiest places in Norway, especially in the summertime. But thankfully, the first 4 nights of my adventure were clear and the sky was full of stars.



The plan was to visit Folgefonna National Park to photograph the Perseid meteor shower, and then head off to hike the famous Trolltunga (Troll’s Tongue) for the third time. 
As every road in the fjords is steep and curvy, I decided to take my journey slowly and spent the first night on the Haukelifjell mountain pass at 1100 metres above sea level. The air temperature was about 4 degrees Celsius (it was 17C before I reached the mountain pass), so I had to put on some extra layers and wear gloves to cook my dinner.



Billion-star hotel.
Canon EOS 6D + Samyang AF14mm F2.8 EF

The next morning, I headed off to Åkrafjorden to do some hiking by Langfossen waterfall. After about one arduous hour of hiking, I finally reached the top of the mountain plateau and was amazed by the view opening towards the Åkrafjorden and the surrounding Folgefonna National Park!



Åkrafjorden and a tiny bit of the Folgefonna glacier on the right side.
Canon EOS 6D + Samyang MF 24mm F1.4

After the hike it was time to hit the road again – my final destination of the day was the glacial lake Insta Mosevatnet, located by the southern arm of Folgefonna glacier, the third largest glacier in mainland Norway. The road up to the parking lot consisted of several ups and downs, sharp turns and sheep relaxing on the narrow mountain road. After 20 minutes of shifting gears while driving up the final elevation angle of 20% in my tiny Peugeot 107, I finally reached my camping spot for the night. The views were absolutely incredible and the weather was fantastic! As the Perseid’s were to peak that night, I was extremely lucky both with the location and weather conditions. 



Lake Insta Mosevatnet and Folgefonna glacier in the sunset light.
Canon EOS 6D + Samyang AF14mm F2.8 EF

As I was in Norway only a few days before the return of the dark nights, the northwestern part of the sky was illuminated with a beautiful midnight glow; during this time of the year, the sun sits only 15 degrees below the horizon.



Night glow over Folgefonna.
Canon EOS 6D + Samyang MF 24mm F1.4





Perseid fireballs and the Milky Way over my campsite, Folgefonna national Park.
Canon EOS 6D + Samyang MF 24mm F1.4 + iOptron skytracker




Looking towards the mountain road.
Canon EOS 6D + Samyang AF14mm F2.8 EF + iOptron skytracker

I was extremely happy with the photos of the meteor shower in this truly amazing location, so I decided to spend one day relaxing before the challenging hike to Trolltunga. Camping in the small village of Bondhus, I visited one of my favourite places in the fjord area – the glacial lake Bondhusvatnet.



Lake Bondhusvatnet and western arm of Folgefonna glacier in the background.
Canon EOS 6D + Samyang AF14mm F2.8 EF

The next day was the second culmination of my trip, as the hike to Trolltunga is one of the most challenging hikes in Norway – after reaching an elevation of 1100 metres above sea level, there are still another 13 kilometres more to travel till the destination point (just remember, the average person’s walking speed is approximately 2.5 km/h). The trail goes through rocks, valleys, several ascending and descending points, and can become really muddy if hiking after rain. With rapidly changing weather conditions and no mobile network at all, the hike becomes even more surreal. 
As I have mentioned before, it was my third hike to the ‘Troll's Tongue’ in the past 3 years, but this time it was the most challenging one. After carrying a 20 kg backpack (that’s more than 1/3 of my body mass) full of food, camping and camera equipment for 28 kilometres in the mountains I was left with the very unpleasant souvenir of knee and shoulder pain for almost a week after the hike. 
But the result was worth every single second spent during the hike. One of the images was even featured as NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day (my third APOD this year so far), which is one of the most honourable awards for an astrophotographer.



Milky Way over Trolltunga. (Notice the tiny silhouette on the cliff – that’s me!)
Canon EOS 6D + Samyang AF14mm F2.8 EF + iOptron skytracker




Enjoying sunset in Larvik before taking the ferry back to Denmark.
Canon EOS 6D + Samyang MF 24mm F1.4





Password reset reminder

Gildong Hong,it has been three months since your last password reset.

Forgot your password?
Please complete the form below

Send Authorization Code

Your authorization code will be sent to
Standard fees apply.

Failed

There is no ID found with that information.
Please confirm the accuracy of your information.

If you would like to create a new account, please click the below link.

Join now

Forgot your ID?
Please complete the form below

Please see the information below.

One ID found

If you would like to create a new account, please click the below link.

Join now

Failed

There is no ID found with that information.
Please confirm the accuracy of your information.

If you would like to create a new account, please click the below link.

Join now

Confirmation email sent

This is the last step to create your account.
Please follow the link sent to your email address.


Authorize account

이메일 발송 완료

고객님 메일로 임시비밀번호가 발송되었습니다.


확인

Change ID

Please enter your new email address.
Please log in with your new email address.

Current email address :
New email address :
Change email address

Change email address
Cancel

Error message [403]

You do not have permission to access this server.
Please contact the administrator.

Go to home

Email authorization

Dear client,
Your registered email address on
Samyang Optics website is hongildong@naver.com.
Please click below to finalize your authorization to Samyang Optics.

Go to home

Didn’t join Samyang Optics?
Another user may have mistakenly entered your email address.
If you have not joined Samyang Optics, please use the link to report the mistake.

Please protect my email address.

- Samyang Optics Administrator -

Note : Please do not reply to this email as the address is a send-only account.
Please contact us with any questions via the following website. Go to website >

Protect email

There is an account created with your email address as below.
To discontinue using this account,
please click on the “block account” button.

hongildong@naver.com

Block account

Account authentication

Congratulations!
Your account has been verified.
Meet the various services of Samyang Optics!

Sign in
Go main

Find ID

There is no account matching your information.

Find ID

Confirm ID

Your ID is bebe***

Confirm

Confirm ID

There is no password matching your information.
Please check if your information is accurate.

Confirm

Find password

The reset password email has been sent to your
email address.

hongildong@naver.com

Follow the instructions in the email to reset your password.
If the email is not in your inbox, please check your spam mailbox.

Confirm

Can’t find the email?

Resend authorization mail

Find password

There is no password matching your information.
Please check if your information is accurate.

Confirm

sms test

USB Driver DOWNLOAD
/upload/magazine/pro/1528766034.jpg