the jewels of rila...

A mere fragment of the dramatic scenic beauty of the Seven Lakes area of the Rila Mountains.

These high-mountain lakes are part of a glacier-fed chain that dot the range along our trail. I think this is the 5th of the seven, each one higher than the next. The water is cold and pure and delicious up here.

We have ascended more than a mile in elevation so far on this day. The high wind and soaking rain began about an hour before reaching this spot. During the briefest of sun-breaks, I managed to make this single exposure with the Rolleiflex before the downpour resumed.

The scale is hard to convey in such a small photograph. If you look very carefully, near the center of the frame and up about a quarter of the way from the bottom, you may see a small tent and two human figures.

I imagine they were crushed to death like bugs underneath an avalanche of cascading boulders.

Rila Mountains, Bulgaria, July 2011.

Rolleiflex MX-EVS, Tessar, Ilford HP5.