Milky Way and Cygnus the Swan (left of center), ISO 3200, 18mm, f/3.5, 62″
I don’t have a cable for my camera’s bulb setting, so I manually held the shutter button down and counted to what I thought was 60 seconds. (iPhoto tells me it was actually 62; not bad!) That’s not a good idea because prolonged contact with your finger will inevitably shake the camera. But this shot turned out all right, and revealed a lot more detail in the dusty Milky Way.
Tonight was perfect—70 degrees and clear. The skies here are the darkest I’ve ever seen. Many of my images contained a meteor or two, including this one. If it weren’t for the streetlights across the highway, I’d be in heaven.
Constellation Cassiopeia and the Andromeda Galaxy, ISO 3200, 18MM, F/3.5, 30″
My first image of the Andromeda Galaxy (right and below center), 2.5 million light years away. To the center left is the “W” shape of the constellation Cassiopeia.
Fenway Park, Boston, MA, Sox-Angels, Aug. 20, 2014
The house that Ted built.
Big Dipper, ISO 3200, f/4, 20 second exposure
Prowling the skies over my garage.
First shot of the moon with the Canon, through the little Meade Cassegrain.
Milky Way, with Aquilla the Eagle in the upper left, and nearby star Altair; 30 second exposure, f/4, ISO 6400
Twenty billion stars and God knows what else.
Western sky, Gorham, NH, 30-second exposure, ISO 6400, f/5.4
Not bad for a first shot.
This is a pretty marginal photo, as photos go, but it’s the first one taken with my new Canon DSLR, which I’ll be using for astrophotography.
I could go on and on about the stars being the flowers of the sky, or something, but that would be stupid.
“Not too good, is it, Chief?”
I used to shoot photos of the moon with my iPhone. I used a mail order bracket and my lousy old Sears refracting telescope. The quality wasn’t the best, but I like how it evokes the old Chesley Bonestell artwork from the 1950s. Years before the Apollo missions, we figured that the lunar maria were smooth, ringed with jagged peaks, based on how they looked through earthbound telescopes.
We found out later that the moon looks completely different when you actually visit. The maria are strewn with boulders and pocked with smaller craters, while meteorites have worn the mountains into rolling hills. I like Bonestell’s version better.
The stars here in NH are so bright, I actually can capture the Big Dipper on my iPhone. I do have a little help from an app called Night Modes, which is giving me a quarter-second exposure. That’s too long for me to keep the camera still without smudging everything, but it does reveal the Big Dipper.
If I crank the exposure up all the way.
And label the stars.
And pretend a little.
Woods outside a bedroom window at the Robert Frost Home, Franconia, N.H.
It’s early yet. I still have a lot of time left to learn more about New Hampshire. So far, I can say that in the looks department, she gives Oregon a run for her money.
We have arrived. Temporary quarters at Mirror Lake outside of Whitefield, N.H., until we find a permanent place in Gorham.
Final tally: seven days, 14 states, 3,400 miles. That trip kinda kept goin’. Big country we got here.
Iowa is not as flat or as boring as I thought it would be. Also, they get more than a quarter of their electricity from windmills. There you go, Iowa!
I spotted this character lurking along I-90 outside of Lincoln, Neb. I don’t think that fence is gonna hold him.
Now the fun begins. And by fun, I mean driving nine hundred miles a day. The landscape is stark, beautiful, and empty. I have no idea where I took this. Idaho, maybe.
I can say that no one lives in Wyoming.