Mourne Mountains snap wins UK Mountain Photo of the Year 2016
An image captured in the Mourne Mountains has won Trail Magazine's UK Mountain Photo of the Year 2016.
Ryan Simpson's shot of Pierce's Castle beat hundreds of entrants in Trail magazine's annual competition to win over ￡2,000 of Nikon camera equipment.
Ryan said: "My Pierce’s Castle photo was taken in August just as the purple heather began to fully blossom across the Mournes. There had been a thin haze across the hills for most of the day and I knew the potential existed for something atmospheric shortly after sunset.
"With barely a breeze in the air it would become undoubtedly one of my more memorable moments in the Mournes. Whilst I enjoy shooting for myself, I take pleasure also in being inspired by the work of other mountain photographers from around the UK and that’s why winning ‘Trail UK Mountain Photo of the Year’ for me is a particularly great honour."
Kicking off in May 2016, the initial competition entries were whittled down to a final shortlist of 25 by a panel of expert judges, including record-breaking mountaineer Alan Hinkes OBE, mountain filmmaker Terry Abraham and editor of Practical Photography magazine Ben Hawkins. The shortlist was put to a public vote via the website www.livefortheoutdoors.com.
Trail editor Simon Ingram said: "For all its fine execution and beauty, I think this image also captured people’s imaginations because it’s such an evocative, unfamiliar location. For walkers who might focus a lot on the mountains of Wales, Scotland and England this picture will hopefully inspire more to explore the mountains over the Irish Sea."
The top ten images (viewable above) include four captured in the Lake District, three from South Wales' Brecon Beacons and two from the Scottish Highlands and Islands.
1. Pierce’s Castle, Mourne Mountains, by Ryan Simpson
2. The Inaccessible Pinnacle, Isle of Skye, by Adrian Trendall
3. The Cairngorms in winter, by Maximilien Czech
4. Wasdale, Lake District, by Rob Graham
5. Cribyn, Brecon Beacons, by Grant Hyatt
6. Striding Edge, Lake District, by Nicolas Cleminshaw
7. Llyn y Fan Fach, Brecon Beacons, by Anthony Pease
8. Brecon Beacons by Jolanta Anisiejko
9. Helvellyn, Lake District, by Mark Gamblin
10. Blencathra, Lake District, by Pauline Henderson