It was a long, hard drive by safari vehicle from Amboseli National Park to Loldia House on Lake Naivsha, Kenya. Lake Naivasha is 100 km nw of Nairobi and is known for the recent arrival (since 2006) of thousands of flamingos. The plan was to eat lunch at the Loldia House camp then proceed to the Lake for a photoshoot. We arrived so late that we had only limited light left under cloudy skies and debated whether it was worth yet again another rough ride to the lake for the photoshoot. Photographic wisdom prevailed – it is better to photoshoot even in poor light than not shoot at all. We quickly dropped off our luggage, jumped back into the vehicles and drove to the lake. Thirty interminable minutes later we arrived at the lake edge where 2 small boats were waiting with a driver and a guide in each boat. The six of us unsteadily climbed into the boats with our gear at the ready.
The light was diminishing fast. The driver and guide barely understood English, but they did understand my hand language and my urgency as I shouted “faster, faster” and waved my hand forward toward a flock of flamingos.
As we approached, the flock rose like a cloud of pink.
It looked as if they were galloping across the water as they gained momentum for takeoff. Using my Canon 7D and 70-200 f/4 lens set to ISO 800 for a 1/4000 sec shutter speed at f/2.8 and handheld, I was able to capture this small micro group out of the hundreds that were streaming past our boat.
It was breathtaking to be surrounded by such clamor, sound and motion. Soon it would be dark. We returned to camp exhausted but exhilarated and very happy that we had made the right decision to proceed to the lake.