Matt Williams Photography | Wyaralong Dam Sunset

Wyaralong Dam Sunset

April 19, 2015  •  1 Comment

Speechless #1 The south east of Queensland had been getting treated to some pretty nice sunsets over the past couple of days. With the onset of Autumn, there seemed to be a constant helping of nice high cloud floating around.

After watching a really good sunrise on my way to work that morning, the high cloud stayed around all day. Every time I went outside, I looked up, expecting it to have moved on, but it lingered. I was thinking that another sunset was definitely on the cards for tonight.

When the boss knocked me off at 3pm, there was only one thought in my head.....SUNSET! The next thing was where was I going to go.

I got home as quickly as I could, had a shower, then threw my gear on to the front seat and I was off. The destination that I had in mind was this big old lone fig tree near Jimboomba. On the way there, I decided that due to the conditions, and what I hoped to be an awesome display of colour, that I needed more. I need water. I wanted reflections as well. So, after racking my brain of possible locations close enough to get to by sunset, I decided on Wyaralong Dam, about 15 k's to the west of Beaudesert. I had only ever been there once before, so I was hopeful I could find a good composition.

On the way to the dam, I took a side road which led me past a very large private dam. I nearly pulled up there, but decided to continue on.

I arrived at the dam just after 5pm, and was cutting it pretty fine. Sunset was due at 5.33pm. On my way in, I noticed that the dam was gated, and that there were signs saying “open from 6am to 6pm”, and “gates locked at 6pm.” I hoped that I would have enough time!!

I did a quick lap of the road in to the parking area checking out the surroundings. There was a section with a couple of dead trees in the water. That was my shot. I doubled back and pulled up on the side of the road.

I quickly got both my cameras and tripods and took them down the edbe of the dam. Luckily for me, there was two compositions from this spot. One of the group of trees looking directly towards the setting sun, and another of a single tree 90˚ to the right. I set the remotes up and had them firing off a shot every 10 seconds.

Speechless #2

Then it was back to the truck to grab my GoPro to set it up for a timelapse (check it out below). I ran down the road about 100m and put it on the guard rail and pressed go.

I then went back to my main cameras and witnessed one of the most spectacular displays of sunset colours that I have ever seen!! This afternoon will definitely be staying with me for a long time!!!

The colours were amazing. The yellows. The oranges. The reds, The pinks. The purples. The blues. I am so glad I took the drive to capture it.

I got so caught up in watching the sunset, that I nearly forgot about the time and having to get out before 6pm or else be locked in for the night. Right on cue, at 5.57pm, the colour had all but disappeared, so I sprinted off for my GoPro. Then it was back to my two cameras. I folded up the tripods just enough to get them in the front seat of my car, then I was off and out the gate at 5.59pm. Phew....I made it. I parked up on the other side of the gate and packed my kit away properly for the drive home. I called my wife and let her know that I would be home not long after 7pm.


On my way home, I took the road out back past the big private dam I had seen on my way in. As luck would have it, there was still a glow in the sky being reflected in the water. I pulled up, grabbed a camera and tripod and headed across to the fence for a closer look. I should've put my gumboots back on as well, because it was a swamp and I had to retrieve my thongs on numerous occasions. The other things that like swamps are mosquitoes. I have never been bitten so many times in my life! But it was worth it for the shots that I got. I hung around long enough to even get the stars with the faint glow of the sunset in there as well.


Needless to say, I had to call my wife again to let her know that I was going to be home a bit later now. Luckily I have the most awesome wife in the world and she understands me!


Brian Moore(non-registered)
Hi Matt - just to let you know about that gate - you can not get in after 6pm but you can get out at anytime...
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