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This blog is an amateur photographer's attempt to show how beautiful the world really is. He is drawn to the colors of nature like a moth to a candle light. What are showcased here are nature's grand display of colors at sunrise and sunset, beautiful beaches and off-the-beaten track locations in his beloved Philippines, waterfalls and some of nature's great sculptures, architectural gems, and other views from around SE Asia that he was fortunate to see at one point.

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July 18, 2010

capones: zambales' beautiful rock

how a day ends in Capones

Capones is an outdoor photographer's heaven. Accessible, deserted, amazing landscape, white sand beaches, views of both sunset and sunrise, the list can go on.

Located just 30 minutes by boat from the fishing village of Pundaquit in San Antonio,  Zambales, Capones island is one of the destinations for island hopping crowds staying in resorts in Pundaquit (the place is being positioned as another surfing destination). The island's white sand beaches (which actually "moves" depending on the season) and it's quaint Spanish era lighthouse are the main draws. Nobody lives in the island, except for a herd of goats and some feral cats.

Capones Beach Rocks 2
huge rocks on the beach

I have been to the island before, twice actually. But this time my friends and I decided to camp there. We were already in the island before the first rays of the day shone. The water was calm and the bangka ride uneventful. It was weird, considering that it was already July (and usually is typhoon season already in the Philippines).

We dropped our gears on the beach and headed straight the north eastern side of the island, hiking through a trail covered with overgrown talahib grasses. It looked like its been a while since someone used that trail.

The light that morning was magnificent. But lack of sleep and a 3 hour bus ride took its toll; I did not get to shoot much. But I am glad I saw a very beautiful sunrise.

We headed back to camp after sunrise, spread our earth sheets on the sand and dropped to sleep. Setting up the tents can wait.

The sound of incoming bangka woke me up a few hours later. A trio, two German nationals and their Filipino friend, unloaded their gears and started pitching their tents. Our group and the new comers officially made up that weekend's beach crowd in Capones - a crowd of 6.

Capones White Sand Stretch
white sand stretch

It was midday when I started to head out and explore the south western side of the island. I climbed a hill and had a great view of the stretch of deserted white sand beach. Weather was great although summer is officially over. Probably the reason why there are no island hopping crowds despite the fine beach weather.

Capones Rocks
jagged peaks

Part of the allure of Capones is its rugged landscape. Its not your usual flat island surrounded by a white sand beach. Its huge rocks and jagged peaks and cliffs transport you to another place. There seem to be limitless options for a landscape photographer.

We spent a good part of the day swimming and exploring possible POVs for sunset. In the end we decided that the best place to shoot is on the coral bed near our campsite. From there we have a good view of the western sky, with the peaks of Capones in the background.


For the first few minutes of sunset it looked like we won't get the dramatic colors we are after. The sun will be behind the peaks by the time the sun is near the horizon, and rain clouds are also forming. It will be another overcast sunset, or so we thought.

I was ready to call it a day when the bluish gray rain clouds started to transform. Somebody shouted "we got colors!" and then it was a frantic rush to the positions we have scouted before.

Capones Sunset Textures
start of transformation

What followed was most awesome display of nature's colors. Lady luck smiled on us that afternoon - a wide ear to ear grin.

Capones On the Edge Sunset
on the edge

Even the anti-sunset skies (the one opposite the sunset) was bathed in a pinkish glow. We tried to squeeze every last detail and color into our frames.

Capones Anti Sunset
anti sunset

It was dark when we walked back to camp. I was tired but happy to be blessed with another beautiful sunset. I found the other group sitting near the shore, one remarked how beautiful the sunset. We all agreed. Now its time to cook dinner.

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Oman said...

awesome shots. this island was my first of many trips with dong ho. hope to go back there pag di na bumabagyo. :)

sheng said...

I think you have shpwn the best of Capones. True indeed, Capones is one photographer's heaven, my husband is itching to go there now, and Nagsasa Cove. Oh well.

the scud said...

sobrang ayos talaga sa capones. i wont mind going back. hahanapin ko ang nawalang eyeglass. haha.

Jim said...

Awesome shots. Simply brilliant.
Sydney - City and Suburbs

Julie said...

What an astounding beautiful landscape you have presented for us. The colours are simply wonderful,

Anonymous said...

Surely looks like paradise. Thank you for this great escape.

daily athens

Sylvia K said...

This place looks like paradise and, as always, your photos are superb, the colors stunning and they take my breath away! What a beautiful world you have there!


Siromade said...

That's an amazing photos. They're beautiful what a lovely trip you had and nice views of the place.

January Zelene said...

that is so beautiful. I wish I can visit that place and witness the beautiful sunset too.

Indrani said...

Love the rocky terrain, beautiful shots with colorful sky in the background.

Jenn said...

You are one great photographer. I would really love to have your talent, too. :) As a Filipino, it makes me proud to see my country through your eyes (and lenses). The Philippines is indeed beautiful!

Have a peek at My World HERE. Happy Tuesday!

Al said...

Wow, absolutely spectacular. Nature may have smiled on you, but you knew how to capture that smile perfectly!

BraCom said...

Just stunning

Regards, Bram

Seen on My World Tuesday

Ishmael F. Ahab said...

The place is great!

I have one question. Is the lighthouse there still operating?

Jenn said...

Lady luck was indeed was indeed on your side. Such beautiful colors! I was there once and instantly loved the place. A good idea to camp there one of these days. Great captures as always!!

L. Neusiedler said...

simply amazing views and excellent photos to bring them to us too!

Ariel Marco said...

It was the early 90s the first and only time i went to San Antonio, Zambales and have seen Capones from the shores of Pundaquit. Didn't realize the island is this beautiful up close. Ganda talaga ng Pinas! Thank you, sir!

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