Long Shutter Speeds at the Palendorp van Petten


Extremes at the Palendorp van Petten!

Would you like to work with filters for a few hours at one of the most inspiring locations on the Dutch coast? In November and December the conditions at the Palendorp van Petten are good for a versatile evening on the coast.
During this workshop with long shutter speeds and filters, the tide slowly rises so that we can capture the dynamics of the swirling North Sea around the piles in an excellent way. The expected highest water level coincides with sunset. Wonderful conditions for a creative and inspiring evening by the sea! Will you join “Pets specialist” Mike Muizebelt?


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There are moments in Dutch nature that we note in our agendas well in advance. There is currently such a marker for Sunday, November 17, 2024 and Monday, December 16, 2024 at the Palendorp of Petten. Why you may ask?

Extra high water level during high tide

Normally the maximum height of the flood at Petten is about 70 to a maximum of 80 centimeters above NAP. On these days it is even higher than normal and is even almost at the height of a spring tide. Spring tide occurs at the new moon and full moon, when the sun, the Earth and the moon are more or less aligned. Then the attraction is greatest and it is called spring tide. Although there is no moon, there are times on these days when there are extremely high tides at Petten, the maximum high tide is 124 cm on November 17 and 117 cm on December 16. (NB the wind can push the water along the coast even higher!).

Sunset at ± 4:30 PM

In these special circumstances I want to have the chance for the best light, and you guessed it...... sunset pretty much takes place during the peak of this high tide. According to the schedule, the tide will reach its highest level just after sunset, after which we will enter the blue hour. So it comes together nicely this day! The conditions will be very dynamic because during the high tide it is almost 2 meters higher! So there is a lot to photograph!


To really get the most out of this afternoon, I have a few tools with me. For example, you can use one of the highest tripods in the Netherlands, the Sirui R-5214XL, with the center column added it reaches 260cm. Very cool to experiment with a viewing angle that you can't otherwise achieve.

The weather....can be very extreme!

This workshop is given outside, it can be fresh and windy at the coast. Especially in December, where the average temperature on this day is 6 degrees, working on the coast will be a challenge. So do you realize that before you book this workshop!
However, with the right clothing this should not be a problem, I often wear several layers and a windbreaker for my sessions on the beach. Waterproof shoes or boots are a must! The workshop will be moved to another date if the circumstances are really too turbulent. We take care of the inner person with hot chocolate, hand warmers and soups!

The program
13.30 - 14.00 Reception and theory
14.00 - 17.00 Slow shutter speed photography (6 or 10 stops ND filters and ND grad filters are needed and can be borrowed on request)

Intensive and personal guidance

What comes first at Photo United is enjoying your surroundings, being inspired by our subjects and each other, but also having fun with our beautiful hobby; photography. The student is expected to have a pro-active attitude, so that there is good interaction between the student and workshop leader and the group as a whole. This way you get the best return from this exciting photo evening at one of the most varied stretches of beach in the Netherlands.

Location: Beach near Petten - North Holland (exact location to be announced)
Workshop leader: Mike Muizebelt
Number of participants: maximum 8
Level: novice and experienced photographers
Inclusive: snack & hot drinks & hand warmers
Time of day: 13.30 - 17.30


  • Sufficient basic knowledge to set your aperture, shutter speed and ISO yourself
  • A tripod with cable release
  • A wide-angle lens and short telephoto lens (Anything between 12 and 200mm is perfect)
  • Weatherproof clothing and dry socks (think wet feet, wind, moisture)
  • Your camera with a full battery and a spare battery. The cold and slow shutter speeds make an attack on your capacity.
  • Your ND and ND gradation filters (cleaning rag to remove the scale from the sea)
  • Warm clothing, several layers work better than 1 thick sweater.
  • Waterproof shoes/boots


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