July 31 2012
Tonight was the last entry in the 28th edition of L’International des Feux Loto-Québec annual competition that attracts leading pyrotechnic companies from around the world to compete – tonight it was the United States who would light up the Montreal skyline.
The United States have been a regular competitor and this year was the third time Atlas PyroVision Productions have represented the USA at the event. Their 30 minute display had the theme of the Disney classic – Fantasia, set to a mix of modern rock symphony selections performed by rock violinist David Garrett and the Trans Siberian Orchestra.
Despite it starting to rain as I headed out the door and mother nature looking to put on a light show of her own with a few impressive bolts of lightning, I stuck with my plan to head up on to Mount Royal and find a good viewing spot along the escarpment path. Having walked around mount Royal park so often lately I am now pretty familiar with the paths and lookout spots and had a couple of places in mind. One of them ended up not giving a good view of the Jacques Cartier bridge and Molson Brewery which are key landmarks to look for when scouting suitable viewing spots for the fireworks. I ended up setting up at a small clearing that isn’t that far from the staircase leading to the Kondiaronk Belvedere.
Remember the Blair Witch Project?
Walking the escarpment path at night alone is not recommended for anyone who is easily scared (like me for instance). In addition to the possibility of slipping or taking the wrong turn and falling 50 feet over a cliff there was the sound of wildlife rustling though the undergrowth – well I assume it was animals. I kept thinking of the Blair Witch Project.
I didn’t actually see one other person along the Escarpment path which I walked the entire length before returning to a spot I passed about 30 minutes before. Needless to say, I was quite happy once I found my spot and the rain and lightning cleared away. I just had to contend with being eaten alive by mosquitoes and dive bombed by bats.
At least the view of the fireworks was excellent. Being quite a long way from the fireworks I used the 70-300mm lens for all the shots.
With the moon being almost full and the sky starting to clear by the time I returned to civilization, I decided to try and get a shot of the moon. I’ve never been able to achieve a reasonable shot anytime I tried in the past, but tonight I was fairly happy with the outcome.
Having had a bit of a Blair Witch kind of evening and passing by the Allan Memorial Institution which, even in daylight, looks like a perfect horror movie location, I couldn’t resist stopping to take a couple of HDR shots.
And to carry on from the last couple of firework posts, here is a short video of the finale from tonight’s display…together with my shortened Blair Witch style trek to the lookout 😉 You will be happy to know I edited out the other 10 minutes of walking along a path which I had filmed.
To view images in gallery format, simply click on one of the images below.
Thanks for stopping by. Until next time.