One of the reasons I decided to go to Svalbard at the beginning of September was the beautiful light at this time. The birds are mostly gone from their nesting grounds, but the landscape is even more stunning than in the middle of summer. On this trip we had a lot of heavy clouds following us, as well as strong winds from the northeast. However, every now and then the light appeared and gave us brilliant photo opportunities.
At a couple of occasions we were lucky enough to have Blue Whales close to the boat in good light. They were circling around as they were checking us out for quit some time. September is a good time for whales, but this was even better than I was hoping for :-)
All of these images were shot from the boat, either using a Redged tripod or handheld. Being able to use high ISO values with the D3S made it possible to take images I could not take before. The image below was taken at 00:30 AM using ISO2000 with the 70-200VRII hand held. It is razor sharp and noise level is more than acceptable :-)