The River Wye at Monsal Weir, Monsal Dale by Karen Frenkel

Posted on 12/11/2014

The River Wye at Monsal Weir, Monsal Dale by Karen Frenkel is one of twelve photos by members of the Outdoor Writers and Photographers Guild we chose to decorate the ViewRanger offices, representing the best of UK outdoor photography.


Monsal Wier - Karen Frenkel.jpg

The Salt Cellar, Derwent Edge © Karen Frenkel

About the photo:

This beautiful river popular for trout fishing, meanders gently from Buxton to Bakewell through the limestone scenery of Monsal Dale below the famous 24m(80ft) high Monsal Head Viaduct, which once carried the Midland Line.

Early one cold and gloomy February morning, I set out with my medium format camera hoping to photograph the viaduct reflected in the misty river below. The scene was not as good as I’d hoped, so I wandered off to Monsal Weir and was rewarded by this wonderful softly lit view instead, where the white water appeared to glow. These conditions with slide film and no filters has given this image a cool, blue cast which adds to the atmosphere. I included the rocks in the foreground deliberately to add depth to the picture. There is often a surprise shot you can’t pre-visualise or replicate either.

Photographic equipment:  Mamiya 645 film camera, 80mm lens, Fuji Velvia 50 film, F22 ,2sec, Manfrotto tripod, no filters.

Karenmugshot_smaller.jpgAbout Karen Frenkel:

Karen's interest in photography and wild places started in childhood; at the age of 12 she was given her first SLR camera. She would follow her parents around the mountains of northern Britain, then watch her father process her black and white film back in the garden shed.

After a move to the Peak District National Park, inspired by the scenery, she quit her job in chemistry, in 1996, to become a full time landscape photographer. She is one of the few professional female landscape photographers in the country, respected for her knowledge of the Peak District and her ability to get the most out of its varied locations throughout the changing seasons and light.

Her goal is to try and create photographic images that look like paintings. To do this in the field with a minimum of computational “fiddle” usually requires her to seek out unusual light or weather conditions, which she does with a passion. She considers time on the computer as life wasted so does as little manipulation as possible!

Karen’s work has been published in books, calendars, tourist brochures and magazines throughout the country.

She runs her own greetings cards business and has recently written and illustrated two award-winning books, published by Frances Lincoln ‘Peak Landscape and Light – A Photographer’s Guide to the Peak District’ and ‘The Coast to Coast Walk’. She is a member of the Outdoor Writers and Photographers Guild and has been a landscape tutor for a number of years giving both private and group tuition.


For more images and information see:



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