Tim Knifton

Roof climbs and limited times…..

Sorry, I haven’t had time to blog much this week due to going back to work after university and also planning the “4 man” Belgium UE tour for next week.

This blog is a write-up on the opportunity we had to get into the hotel in Lenin Square and onto the roof when visiting Pripyat. For those who read an earlier post, you will know that entering buildings is strictly forbidden but luckily, our guide came round to our way of thinking and turned a blind eye. All we had to do is be back as soon as the remaining tour party gets back to our bus waiting in Lenin Square. This was our 2nd day and our only opportunity to capture the view from a roof before dinner was to be served in the CNPP canteen. Luckily our tour guide understood our passion and told us to be careful.

As soon as she told me this, it was a “thumbs up” to Dai and away we went – running every flight of stairs until we reached the top and prepared to climb the fire escape to the rooftop.

A typical meal at the CNPP canteen.

First stop was the bottom roof which meant we had to climb the old-fashioned fire escape to the top one. The view that presented itself was worth it although the tar roof was scorched and broken we were very careful for any unobvious holes.

This is one of my first shots off the roof overlooking Lenin Square. The Palace of Culture is to the right and the supermarket is in front.

This was my second shot, we had limited time and had to think fast and get everything we wanted in a small amount of time. I captured many view points of the metal signs but one on this blog will suffice. I call this “R for Rooftopping”.

A quick turn of the tripod and a few shots taken of some residential apartment blocks with Reactor 4 in the background.

On Saturday, April 26, 1986, a disaster occurred at reactor No. 4, which has been widely regarded as the worst accident in the history of nuclear power. As a result, reactor No. 4 was completely destroyed and has since been enclosed in a concrete and lead sarcophagus to prevent further escape of radiation. Large areas of Europe were affected by the accident. The radiation cloud spread as far away as Norway, in Scandinavia. You can read more online by searching.

Getting my butt back down the fire escape with a fully extended tripod with camera mounted was the next step but the last photo I wanted from the roof was the ferris wheel.

We had limitations as the only lens I had with me (and Dai too) was the Canon 17-40mm F4L. We left our remaining kit on the bus and didn’t plan on bringing it as it would be too much to carry but didn’t know we would be getting this opportunity. It would have been too much time spent changing lenses and less about the photography if we had opportunity to bring more kit.

After the climb down, a few other photos were taken and the descent took place. We managed some time to do the typical urbex corridor and stair shots and made it to the ground floor in one piece.

Hotel safe.

There were some items left behind (as expected) on the ground floor so had some time to take these before I heard the bus honk its horn and we were out, safe and sound but more importantly, we had achieved the images we wanted and got some building time too – however limited it was.

Thanks for reading.

This entry was published on October 24, 2012 at 9:31 pm. It’s filed under HDR, Photography, Travel, Urbex photography and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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