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  1. Hertsman

    Hertsman

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    Trying to plan my year out already, and have many good things said about YWP, and whilst Chester seems a popular zoo according to the internetz, is as good, better, or worse than YWP ?

    When I say best, I mean provides great photo ops of the animals without dirty glass, big lumps of mesh or any other zoo parafernalia spoing the shot......

    Both are best part of 3 hours drive from me, but only 2 hours apart when (its grim) Up North, so need some guidance or advice or even an opinion....

    Cheers all
     
    reheat module likes this.
  2. Hertsman

    Hertsman

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    Aww, guys, 60 odd views and no comments ? I know theres a good group of regular zoo shooters on here....
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2018
  3. Box Brownie

    Box Brownie

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    I am watching this thread because suggested locations insights are always good to learn about.

    Hopefully those with the "knowledge" will chime :)
     
  4. Cobra

    Cobra W Staff Member

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    Phitt, Hissy Phitt
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    They both have there advantages, YWP has to be the polar bears, And Chester is a lot bigger!
    Last year a couple of us did both, YWP first ( less than 2.5 hours from me) and then drove to HERE stayed overnight in one of the Chalets. Cheap & comfortable food was OK too (y)
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2018
  5. Hertsman

    Hertsman

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    Was kind of my thinking Chris......
     
  6. OldCarlos

    OldCarlos

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    I can't compare, having not visited YWP, but Chester zoo is great & big enough to spend all day in. (must be 5 yrs since I last visited though)
    Blackpool zoo isn't too bad either tbh.........as long as it aint during the main school holidays.
     
  7. reheat module

    reheat module

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    Live about 60mins from YWC, been once and WILL NOT revisit.
    Although we went on a school holiday day, some animals were fearful of the screaming children.
    There was a lack of toilet facilities available (one area was closed).
    Food provision was appalling, with one area sold out by 12:15 and no idea of Re-provision.
    A display of a poor business model.
    Tigers were good for viewing/images.
    Rhinos were far too far away and in a pen with tractor equipment and tyres?
    Never seen a Polar Bear in a green field and so dirty it looks like a Grizzly - here you go.
    Sorry to be so negative, but for a full day out, plus petrol, entrance, disappointment and a meal on the way home, I was hoping for more.
     
  8. ChrisHeathcote

    ChrisHeathcote

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    Its a while since Ive been to Chester, but from memory it was very big with the enclosures not being overly friendly for the photographers. YWP is the opposite, whilst it isn’t overly big (in fairness compared to most of the others it is still in its infancy) the enclosures are very photographer friendly with very few fences. The way they are designed is that the walkways are raised up so that you can shoot over them. The Cheetahs for example have 2 viewing points 1 on the ground through glass and a a second in a tresshouse sort of thing which puts you level the higher platforms, on the other side are the giraffes which you are almost levels with their heads. Tigers again have a walkway over the lower section (where the pond is) and is level with the top section.

    As you can tell I am a bit of a fan of YWP :) Its a bit of a trek but if you’re interested in Polar Bears, Highland Wildlife Park up near Aviemore have just announced a cub has been born. I will hopefully be up there later in the year
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2018
  9. Cobra

    Cobra W Staff Member

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    They seemed pretty chilled when I was there,

    129A1881.jpg

    but of course the real trick is to catch them in the water

    129A1864.jpg

    I never saw any of the "complaints" that you have, Its strange how peoples perceptions differ.
    I'm not saying you are wrong of course, but we never experienced any of those negatives.
     
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  10. Cobra

    Cobra W Staff Member

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    Oh one last thing, the lion "enclosure" at YWP is pretty damned good, no glass or wire to get in the way, and the Lions are real posers too.

    129A0396.jpg
     
  11. ChrisHeathcote

    ChrisHeathcote

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  12. viv1969

    viv1969

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    I, too, had a cracking visit to YWP.
    Yes, there was construction going on...this is a relatively new park, and expansion is inevitable, but the animals were easy to shoot, calm, not displaying boredom behaviour, and a delight to see.
     
  13. Matt-P

    Matt-P

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    As a native of the Chester area I get there a lot and I do like it, but depending on what you want to shoot the opportunities can be limited by either chainlink or think glass. In some cases like the Jaguars or new Orangutan enclosure you can get a clean view off the walkways, but in others like the tigers it's either fence or glass.

    Nevertheless, I enjoy it for a good day out with the family, it's a large site and you could easily make a day of it, just try and avoid the crowded times.
     
  14. GeeJay57

    GeeJay57

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    I agree...
     
  15. rackhs

    rackhs

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    never been to Chester, sorry. Been to YWP a couple of times and want to go again! Really enjoyed it (know others haven't).

    Rhinos do seem to be in a space near tractors etc. in the background, but there are a lot of viewpoints and not restricted viewing -

    [​IMG]Rhino-1 by rackhs, on Flickr

    Same for the Lions and viewing (as mentioned above) -

    [​IMG]Lion-1 by rackhs, on Flickr

    And haven't managed a water shot yet, maybe next time (although looking at it again, the whole shot looks a bit dark - that will be me then :) ) -

    [​IMG]Polar Bear-1 by rackhs, on Flickr
     
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  16. LCPete

    LCPete

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    Never been to YWP but am local to Chester so go there a lot this time of year I don't go in the summer it can be horrendously busy
    As Matt says some of the enclosures are excellent for photos like the rhinos but some are terrible like the short clawed otters glass 4 feet back from a barrier
    It's worth a visit tho there's lots to see and you would struggle to see it all in a day
     
  17. kingo15

    kingo15

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  18. Hertsman

    Hertsman

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    Thanks for all the replies so far guys, I would always avoid a good zoo in the school hols as a matter of course tbh........

    I enjoy zoo shooting, but only if I can make the animal look like it was in the wild and not obvs behind bars....
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2018
  19. snerkler

    snerkler

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    Tbh it depends. Generally speaking I prefer YWP, not just because it’s only 35mins away but because 99% of the animals can be taken without any glass, fencing or other obstruction. However, this does depend on the animals playing ball and being in the right place in the enclosure. That being said every time I’ve been (which must be approaching 20 times if not more) I’ve been able to take unobstructed pics. I would advise going to the Lemurs and Squirrel Monkeys at feeding times to make sure they’re out though. IMO they’ve made a bit of a mess of the lemur enclosure. The new house is great apart from the fact it’s got a very large roof which the lemurs like to congregate on, meaning they’re difficult to see and taking pics is a bit pointless, hence why it’s best to see them at feeding time when you know they’re going to be off the roof. Also they’ve cut far too many trees and branches down imo meaning the enclosure is quite sparse in comparison to what it used to be.

    The Tigers are also far lazier than they used to be now they’re grown up and since they’ve split them up from their mum they tend to pace next to the enclosure that she’s in.

    Despite the couple of negatives all in all it’s a great park.

    Chester is A LOT bigger and as a result has a lot more variety of animals, some main ones being elephants, Jaguars and penguins. Oh and Tapirs, my wife loves tapirs ;)

    Enclosures are much more split as to whether you have a clear view or have to view through glass or a fence. Also, as it’s so vast there’s a lot of walking involved if you want to see everything and as a result you don’t have the same amount of time to be patient waiting for the animals to stop sleeping or getting into a part of the enclosure which is more optimal for photos.

    Again though, on the whole it’s a fantastic park and there are some good opportunities for pics.

    TBH it’s not always that bad during the school hols, just depends on times and weather. Going during the week in school times can actually be worse as you get large school parties. At weekends I tend to get to the YWP for opening time and you can get round most of the park in a couple of hours, before it starts getting too busy. After which you can go back and focus more on one or two animals.

    At both Chester and YWP you can get pictures which aren’t obvious they were taken at a Wildlife Park, if the animals play ball of course ;) Obviously it’s not going to look like you’re in the middle of the Masai Mara, but you can get it so that there’s no man made structures etc in the shot ;)
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2018
  20. Hertsman

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    Cheers Toby, you know the score, and know what I mean about zoo shooting...good post and thanks.....
     
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  21. michael23

    michael23

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  22. Gremlin

    Gremlin Cynthia

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    I loved the YWP, well it does have the Polar Bears :love:
    It's not too big, enough to keep you occupied easily for a day, mind you I could have watched the Polar Bear all day , so playful.
    I found Chester a bit to big and east to get lost in.
    The accommodation Cobra mentioned is only a short drive away and if I went there again I would probably stay there longer and do 1 2 dy
    visit to the zoo.
    Only thing I would say a about the Hall is it is popular for weddings so can get a tad noisy on Saturday nights, other then that a lovely location
    but good VFM
     
  23. the black fox

    the black fox

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    Can I offer a couple of alternatives I live near Chester zoo and while it’s large it’s not photographer friendly but there are alternatives if yer oop norf . First off at Colwyn Bay ,north wales ,you have the welsh mountain zoo ,not a lot there but it’s open and reasonably priced ,and next up in the Lake District there’s south Lakeland zoo ,which last year was free entry ,not sure this year though and was one of the best I have been to in the u.k photography wise .could have done with more time there ,the snow wolves were superb
     

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