I made a short video. Enjoy! (Nerds: There are a bunch of details below.)Continue reading “Star Trails 2020 (so far)”
Last night Kathleen suggested I check out Image Hill for some astrophotography. Since it was only five minutes’ drive from the farm, I checked it out.
I got about 25 minutes’ worth of star trails (I set my timer for 30 minutes but my camera battery had other ideas).Continue reading “Image Hill; fog”
I went to my dark spot last night from about 10:45 pm to 11:45 pm or so, and set up my camera. I was hoping to catch a few of the Perseid meteors, though I knew I was too early for the peak.
I let the camera run for about an hour (the battery actually died at about the 0:55 mark, but close enough), and the result is the star-trails photo above. I found two bright(ish) meteor trails in it, highlighted below. (The star trail image is bright because the sky was still faintly glowing with sunset light, even at 10:45, when I started; the meteors below are from later on in the process.)
The Space Weather forecast called for a slight chance of aurora and the peak of the Lyrid meteor shower, so I packed up my camera gear and went out west of town. I let the camera snap away for about half an hour before I decided I was tired and came home. I mean, it was a school night, after all.
I got one very faint meteor and no aurora to speak of, but that’s OK, I got some star trails out of it, too. And a truck passed by me on the gravel road, illuminating the field for me, so there’s that too.
Nerdy details: 113 images, 15 seconds each, 11mm, f/2.8, ISO 1600, stacked in GIMP (no dark frames).
Forty-some minutes worth of Earth’s rotation. In the lower-left corner, you can watch the crescent moon and Venus setting; the moon is reflected, a bit, in the water that was on the field.
Nerd stuff: 153 light frames, 5 dark frames; each frame is 15 seconds, f/2.8, 11mm, ISO 800.
Half an hour’s rotation of the earth sure does look interesting.
And here’s Orion, next to a power pole, with the bright lights of Souris, MB, on the horizon.
In related good news, my camera and lens appear to have survived last week’s tumble unscathed.
I went out last night, since it was clear, and visited my friend Tim, who’s camping this weekend at Wasagaming. I snapped some star trails at his campsite (my battery, almost dead, managed 80 shots at 10 seconds each).
On the way home, I pulled off the highway about ½ a mile down a gravel road, and tried out a panoramic photo of the Milky Way. I set my camera up in portrait mode and shot 5 photos, 45 seconds each, tilting the camera up after each shot. The camera started out aimed at the horizon and the last shot was pointed straight up at the zenith.
I stitched the photos together using Hugin, which did a very good job of automatically orienting the photos and finding the matches. I didn’t have to massage anything manually.
You’re not getting tired of these, are you? I hope not, because I’m not planning to stop.
This one was shot in the wee hours of Friday, from about 12:10 – 1:10 AM, behind cabin 650 at Elkhorn Resort. You can see the International Space Station streaking by (I saw it go overhead, too, and I waved to the crew). Also, there’s a short meteor streak in the lower third, on the far right.
Nerdy details: 219 images @ 15s, f/2.8, 16mm, ISO 800. No dark frames. Stacked using a Startrails plugin for GIMP.