So to continue something new that I’ve started recently here on ‘Room 2850‘ where I pick some of the stories I’ve covered and then explain a little bit about how I came to get a particular shot we head down to a beautiful part of the North Yorkshire countryside for a snowy start to the day back in March…


Middleham in Wensleydale in North Yorkshire has a long association with the training of top flight racehorses. Several top stables call it home and have based themselves there for many years. Ideally suited to take advantage of the surrounding countryside to exercise and train the horses it forms a perfect base from which to develop future champions. Come rain or shine or in this case snow the horses are ridden out through the town each morning and up onto the ‘Gallops’ to be put through their paces.

I visited the area in March to do a feature on one of the stables based there and was fortunate (…if you’re a photographer) to arrive early in the morning in the middle of a heavy snow storm to catch the start of the morning’s workout.

As I pulled into the town I got lucky, photographically speaking, and saw straight away some riders heading up towards me through the snow. Grabbing my camera from the seat next to me I quickly jumped out of the car and shot some pictures as they came through the town. Auto-focus can sometimes be easily confused especially when there are so many ‘things’ in the frame – snow flakes in this case! So I pre-focussed on the apex of the bend using the white line as a reference point and waited for the horses and riders to reach it before shooting a couple of frames.

Once they had passed me I headed up behind them to the gallops and spent a couple of hours taking pictures of these impressive animals exercising before visiting one of the stables.

The colour version of this picture ran in the Daily Express and was shot with a Nikon D3S at the long end of a 70 – 200mm f2.8 zoom lens. The ISO was set to 2200 and was taken using an aperture of f2.8 at 1/200th of a second shutter speed.


 You can see my blog post called ‘The Gallops‘ which contains many of my other pictures and background from the day……… HERE



Middleham Gallops


See more of my photographic work over on my website and blogs…… HERE

Images remain copyright Ian Forsyth

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