On a gloomy afternoon in mid-December I walked to the river with my camera. I was shocked to see how much the water level had fallen in only two days.

The sky was so dark with clouds that at first I failed to see a grey heron standing on the opposite side of the river. When it moved, I saw it and mounted my camera and a long lens on a tripod.

The heron walked around a little and the flew about 200 meters upstream.

I didn’t expect to get any wildlife photos on such a dark day. Fortunately, that grey heron blessed me with its presence and reminded me that ideal light conditions are far less important than simply being outdoors with a camera.

Location: Yasugawa upstream from Japan Route 8 on Google Maps

Published by Greg Peterson

Professor Emeritus, Kyoto Notre Dame University. I have retired from full-time service (1977-2014) and now offer weekly lectures in interpersonal and intercultural communication. Since 1980 I have lived in Shiga Prefecture, Japan, where I enjoy outdoor activities, especially photography, hiking, and cycling.

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