Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Red Moon over Orion

After I clicked the shutter on the last image (see previous post) I had a few moments to enjoy the eclipse by eye before clouds rolled overhead.  I just don't seem to be able to watch anything for long before I want to grab the camera.  In this case I had only a couple minutes.  Like two.

I quickly removed the refractor from the travel mount and replaced it with the camera body and 10-22 EF-S lens.  Frame. Click.  Oh ... great picture of my chain link fence in the bottom half of the frame.  I've got to get to an area behind our yard with a clear view.  I grab the whole mount (it is light) and before I walk away I remember I am attached to a dew heaters and a battery.  Nice.

OK.  Calmly make sure I am not tethered and walk away again.  Up and out of the backyard trying not to stumble in the eerie not-moon light.

I plop the mount down (tick tock the clouds are coming),  point in, well, that direction, guess an exposure time and take the picture.  Oh yeah! Focusing would be helpful ... (tick tock) ...there is Sirius at least.  Focused.  Take the picture.  Whew.  I spend the next 5 minutes taking pictures with random exposure times but it was that first (focused non-chain link fenced) picture that was the best.

click image for super-size-me or here for flickr
I spent a couple hours minding the camera on the telescope taking picture after picture and occasionally looking up.  But watching Orion reach in vain for the red moon before drowning in the clouds is what I will remember from the lunar eclipse of 2010. 

Happy Winter Solstice!

Red Moon over Orion

San Jose, CA  December 21, 2010
Canon T2i (stock), Canon EF-S 10-22mm @ 13mm  f4
Astrotrac Travel System Mount
15sec exposure @ ISO800
in-camera dark subtraction

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