Ettalong Beach

I won the first prize in the office christmas raffle - two nights at the Outrigger Ettalong Beach, about 90 minutes north of Sydney.

We decided that the weekend just gone would be the perfect time to get away for the weekend, so I took friday off work as Shelley finishes at 2:30pm and I thought it would be better to avoid the friday afternoon traffic jam on the F3.

Julie was kind enough to lend me her Canon EF 17-40mm f/4 L lens, which is similar to the 18-55mm I already have, but is much higher quality. I didn't actually find it that useful - most of the shots I took were either telephoto (my 70-200 f/4 L is great for these) or indoors in very low light and no flash allowed (my 50mm f/1.8 is perfect for those). I did use the 17-40 for the landscape and wide angle shots, however most of those are stopped down to about f/11 - I'd get almost the same quality from the 18-55 at f/8 and beyond.

So while the 17-40 is a very nice lens, I won't be buying one. Another issue is at the wide end, even without the lenshood, the built-in flash on my 350D is partly blocked by this huge lens. I guess most people who buy this already have a proper external flash :)

Anyway, back to the weekend away.. We were in the pool by 4pm, work called me at 5:15 just as we were getting out.. Saturday we went to the Australian Reptile Park - we arrived just in time for the gator feeding (the little kid near us was horrified they were being fed turtles). We had a look around, I took a few photos.. 1pm was Eric the croc's feeding time, again lots of kids and lots of people holding up their little compact digi-cams into my shot :(

It was about 32 degrees, and 90% rel humidity. So we quickly finished looking at the rest of the park, and went back to the hotel for a swim.

Click here for photos

Some very good shots there,

Some very good shots there, as always. :)