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Apr 23, 2013
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Panning for gold

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Braidwood, Australia

By Daniel Munoz

For 59 year-old Wal Krikowa his hobby has become his passion. The recent volatility affecting gold prices is the least of his concerns. After decades of doing what he calls “the business”, his passion for prospecting gold on weekends has remained unchanged. His experience tells him it all just comes down to luck. Worrying about whether he finds anything is just a waste of time.

Wal and his wife Liz always start their gold prospecting trips with a strict routine. I arrived at their beautiful house in North Canberra on a recent Saturday morning. We hit the road and a short time later we stopped at a local petrol station for what I first thought was a morning cup of coffee. But there was an different motive to this visit. Liz is hugely superstitious, and the stop was part of their ‘luck routine’ before prospecting. She admitted to me between sips of the local brew that another one of her superstitions is to place four soda cans into the same bag, the same way, at the same time before leaving the house. “Everything needs to be perfectly in place to find gold,” she said with a wry grin.

Feb 11, 2013
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Blue + Yellow = Green

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Sydney, Australia

By Daniel Munoz

I knew before it started, that trying to avoid the colorful powder would only make it worse. So, I decided to go all the way and get in close – deep and merciless.

As the clock struck 9 last Sunday morning, the official start of this fun run, I grabbed my two camera bodies and stepped into what was known as the ‘blue zone’. The first runners came towards me, and the fun began.

Sep 7, 2011
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Eleven hours

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When I heard the news, I headed immediately to the scene; that’s what news photographers do.

I remembered a few days earlier I was reading a blog about Reuters photographer Shannon Stapleton going towards the biggest crime scene of recent times; Ground Zero in New York. A silly smile filled my face as, of course, my scene was a grain of sand in the desert compared to what Shannon faced on 9/11.

May 30, 2011
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Money and dreams in Australia’s outback

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Shooting the vast Australian outback had been my goal ever since I first arrived in Sydney. After three years I finally had the opportunity — a Special Report (a Reuters’ investigative story) on a worker shortage in the middle of Australia’s mining boom. My destination, Karratha, is a small town in Australia’s northwest.

After a more than 6 hour flight from Sydney, from one corner of Australia to the other, I touched down into a landscape exactly as I had imagined. The land was littered with red iron ore rocks, clear blue skies stretched with an immensity you only feel at sea, and trains, huge trains, hauled iron ore from the mines to be loaded onto ships bound for China.

Mar 30, 2011
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Working in the pit lane without earplugs

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Excitement best describes my feelings about Formula One racing. Ever since Ayrton Senna battled with Alain Prost in the late 80′s my heart was linked to this circus and more so when Colombian driver Juan Pablo Montoya won a place in the Williams team. He even managed to take the checkered flag in Monaco which was enough to make a whole country crazy.

Those were the days of being a sort of slave inside the dark room, learning and dreaming about having the opportunity to shoot at the side of a track, any track, Interlagos in Sao Paulo was the closest at that time, so it became my objective for years.

Jan 7, 2011

Australia floods cause months of disruptions

GLADSTONE, Australia (Reuters) – Australia’s flood-stricken coal industry may face months of disruptions as reports emerge of key rail and road links being washed away, while some infrastructure may take years to repair, authorities said on Friday.

“There are some aspects of the rebuilding of infrastructure that will take, potentially, years,” Major-General Mick Slater, chief of the flood recovery operation in Queensland state, told a news conference in Rockhampton.

Jan 7, 2011

Australia floods cause possibly years of damage

GLADSTONE, Australia (Reuters) – Australia’s flood-stricken coal industry may face months of disruptions as reports emerge of key rail and road links being washed away, while some infrastructure may take years to repair, authorities said on Friday.

“There are some aspects of the rebuilding of infrastructure that will take, potentially, years,” Major-General Mick Slater, chief of the flood recovery operation in Queensland state, told a news conference in Rockhampton.

Jan 7, 2011

Australia floods cause months, possibly years, of damage

GLADSTONE, Australia, Jan 7 (Reuters) – Australia’s
flood-stricken coal industry may face months of disruptions as
reports emerge of key rail and road links being washed away,
while some infrastructure may take years to repair,
authorities said on Friday.

“There are some aspects of the rebuilding of
infrastructure that will take, potentially, years,”
Major-General Mick Slater, chief of the flood recovery
operation in Queensland state, told a news conference in
Rockhampton.

Jan 6, 2011

Draining flooded Australia mines could take weeks

ROCKHAMPTON, Australia, Jan 6 (Reuters) – Australia’s
flood-stricken coal industry was facing lengthy disruptions on
Thursday, with one miner saying it could take weeks to drain
its pits of water and the biggest coking coal port warning
there was a risk its stocks could run out.

Floods swamped coking coal mines in Queensland state in
December, paralysing operations that produce 35 percent of
Australia’s estimated 259 million tonnes of exportable coal.
Australia accounts for two-thirds of global coking coal
exports, which are needed to make steel.

Jan 5, 2011

Australia floods cause “catastrophic” damage

ROCKHAMPTON, Australia (Reuters) – Australia’s record floods are causing catastrophic damage to infrastructure in the state of Queensland and have forced 75 percent of its coal mines, which fuel Asia’s steel mills, to grind to a halt, Queensland’s premier said on Wednesday.

The worst flooding in decades has affected an area the size of Germany and France, left towns virtual islands in a muddy inland sea, cut major rail and road links to coal ports, slashed exports and forced up world coal prices.

    • About Daniel

      "Photographer based in Sydney, covering the very busy Australian news environment, plenty of sports and business. Before I was in Colombia covering the drug related war for 10 years."
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