15th June 2009 – Introduction
Wild Wonders of Europe has brought me to Macedonia to photograph “small things” in Galičica National Park, a spectacular mountain range rising to 2254 m between Lake Ohrid to the west and Lake Prespa to the east. These stunning lakes sit high in this mountain range, with Prespa at 850m and Ohrid at 693m, and the feeling, colour, weather systems, insects, amphibians, and reptiles all changed according to which slope or lakeside on which you were standing.
The drive from Skopje airport down the length of this small country some 400km or so to our first stop at the small lakeside village of Lagadin was spectacular – Mountains of emerald green trees, pasture and farm land being tended by hand – tall grass meadows were being scythed by families - children, mothers and fathers. “Mel” said the signs selling honey at the roadside, Lombardy poplars climbing through the hot air into blue skies. Macedonia was looking more and more like “Europe’s best kept secret!”
We were lucky to arrive just as the wildflowers were reaching their peak - I am overwhelmed by their spectacular display and by the attendant clouds of butterflies. Life is everywhere. I unpack the camera gear and walk to the lakeside to take a closer look - Lake Ohrid is teaming with fish beneath the water and dragonflies above – great subjects for a first day’s work.
Lagadin is nestled on the east side of Lake Ohrid in the west of Galičica National Park we watch awe-struck as the sun sets slowly over the mountain range on the far side of the lake.
Visit again to see how the mission progresses.
David Maitland / Wild Wonders of Europe
Please note that blogs reflect our photographers' opinions and not necessarily those of the directors of Wild Wonders of Europe.