Posts Categorized: nature + environment

Light Pollution : Asterism

Light Pollution : Canis Major Light Pollution : Orion

Wed. May 1, 2019 – Happy May Day – be it of the traditional It’s Spring! style of May Day or the 20th Century Workers Unite! style of May Day.

Even with education, activism, and communities making an attempt to keep the skies in the American West dark, the switch over to more energy efficient lighting on and around homes and in street lights have made communities brighter than ever at night.

Two of the ‘rural’ dark sky spots that even a few years ago I could be astounded at how many stars I could see from a house or yard now are nearly washed out with too much light. Two days ago, I asked one of my brother’s neighbors to please turn off their front patio lights when they go to bed, kindly last night they did so but to little avail.

Rather than doing the currently fashionable photography trick of processing an astrophoto within an inch of its life to have an incongruous scene of lit foreground object with AMAZING Milky Way Photo, I have instead processed these photos as my eye saw them.

How did my eye see these two adjacent scenes last night? Bright street lights casting light domes to light up houses and to wash out the night sky to the point where one only really sees the bright stars in a constellation. While the asterisms were clear, but the detail was scrubbed out.

Please folks, go read the resources of what average folk and cities can do at the IDSA and let’s work at making sure that all of us can see the stars on a clear night.

Let’s wipe out light pollution.

*****

Double click on the photo thumbnails for the larger photos. Both photos were taken by Ms. Jen with her Nikon D850 and a Nikon 50mm f/1.4G lens.

Just Before Dawn on All Saints Day, or Getting Up Too Early to Photograph the Sunrise at Mackerel Cove

Sparky sitting nicely, waiting for a treat Sunrise at Mackerel Cove beach

Thurs. 11.01.18 – To a person who is not yet on East Coast Daylight time, but instead still three hours behind in Pacific Daylight time, waking up at 6:40am in Rhode Island to be out at Mackerel Cove beach to photograph the sunrise and dogs running free at low tide was a bit of a difficult thing to do – though it was well worth it.

The air was cold, 30-something degrees fahrenheit – hat, gloves, and a jacket were needed. The sun rose slowly, with the first pink light reflections on the wet low tide line at 6:50am. For the next twenty or so minutes, Sparky the black lab ran happily after her ball while Kenji the island dog poked along the high tide kelp piles for edibles, as the clouds lying low in packed cotton ball formation in the eastern sky turned from gray to pink to neon pink-orange-yellow to the sun rising over the trees and houses on the east side of the cove. From 6:50am to 7:18am, it was magical.

Photos taken by Ms. Jen with her Nikon D850 and a 50mm lens.

Pygmy Nuthatches at the Dripping Faucet

Pygmy Nuthatches at the Dripping Faucet

Sat. 10.20.18 – Once again the pygmy nuthatches returned to the water faucet today and I was prepared with my Nikon D850 and a 300mm f/4 lens. I was further prepared by optimizing the fn button on the front of the D850 to switch image size between FX and DX crop so that I would get more reach to take a nice photo(s) of any birds at the water faucet.

This photo makes me happy.

Fisherman’s Cabin in the Aspens

Fri. 10.19.18 – After exploring a few days ago the old Sherwin Creek Road – part cracked pavement and mostly dirt – between Mammoth Creek park and where Laurel Creek meets Hwy. 395, and returning this morning when the light was just right my Mom and I discovered a gate where in one could park next to, hop over and then walk up an old lane along Laurel Creek’s beautiful aspen trees. Less than a quarter mile up this dirt road ended and there was a gate to the right next to the creek with a large sign that said “No Trespassing”.

This was the delight(s) waiting for the trespasser on the other side of the gate and the creek. Photo taken by Ms. Jen between with gate slats.

Two Sides to Every Chipmunk…

Sunbathing Chipmunk, front Sunbathing Chipmunk, back

Thurs. 10.18.18 – I have fallen in love with my Nikon 300mm f/4 prime lens that I recently obtained, it truly is a delight of a long reach lens. The photos it takes are clear, the lens is light and easy to hand hold on my Nikon D850 camera.

I was twenty plus feet away from this Yellow-pine Chipmunk and I still got a good set of photos, albeit a bit de-saturated, with this lens through a heavily tinted dusty window.

Double click on the photos to see them in a gallery, and then click on the icon in the top right to see them at full resolution.

Enjoy.

Convict Creek Aspens

Wed. 10.17.18 – The beautiful golden leaved aspens at the delta where the Convict Creek meets Convict Lake. The light through the autumnal leaves was amazing in this space.

Photo by Ms. Jen with her Nikon D850 with a 50mm lens.

Silver Lake in its Autumnal Glory

Silver Lake in its Autumnal Glory

Sat. 10.13.18 – This afternoon, my Mom and I decided to take a drive around the June Lakes Loop to see the aspen trees in their autumn glory of golden tones. While the trees are a bit far on the opposite bank of Silver Lake, the over all view is most glorious from the boat ramp area of the lake.

Photo taken by Ms. Jen with her camera phone.