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DPChallenge Forums >> General Discussion >> Perseids this weekend...
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08/11/2012 08:40:17 AM · #1
This weekend we'll have the Perseids Meteor Shower in the pre-dawn sky: here's to clear skies and clean shooting of the shooting stars :-)
08/11/2012 09:57:07 AM · #2
Thanks for the post Robert!
08/11/2012 10:11:41 AM · #3
Thanks Robert.
08/11/2012 10:16:19 AM · #4
If you can get up early there's also a nice show in the eastern sky before dawn with Jupiter, an exceptionally bright Venus, and the crescent Moon all clustered together.

NASA article about Perseids -- oops -- same article!

Message edited by author 2012-08-11 10:16:51.
08/11/2012 10:58:40 AM · #5
I'm going to drag my kids out tomorrow morning.

Paul, I saw that page as well. Moonrise is 1247. Any guess on when Venus will be visible? I wonder if the stargazing apps can give that information.

Either way, a trip to the desert at 1am should have us covered.

08/11/2012 11:12:10 AM · #6
So, 35mm f2 or should I rent the 35mm f1.2/24mm f1.4. I presume I will want shoot wide open, minimal moon means a dark sky, thus very high ISOs to capture brief streaks rather than star trails. My 5DII is a mess at 6400 when shooting seascapes at night, this will be terrible.

Any suggestions or prior experience?
08/11/2012 11:12:14 AM · #7
Venus has been well up in the sky (maybe 30°) when I leave for work about 5am.

I just found the Navy's new astronomical data site they now have a search feature for all major Solar System objects as well as the Sun and Moon data (and tons of other stuff!) ... it looks like Venus rises just before 3am here in Oakland; Jupiter and the Moon should be right there at the same time, as they will be clustered very close together.

Message edited by author 2012-08-11 11:58:32.
08/11/2012 11:35:35 AM · #8
2:46am. Ugh! Thanks for the link.
08/11/2012 11:36:15 AM · #9
My recommendation is to forget the camera and just enjoy the show. I've tried to shoot meteor showers before and even when you capture something it looks exactly like a 5-second exposure of a plane flying by. I'm always disappointed.
08/11/2012 11:45:18 AM · #10
Ha! I thought about that as well. You were not able to capture more than one at a time?
08/11/2012 07:44:39 PM · #11
Originally posted by bspurgeon:

Ha! I thought about that as well. You were not able to capture more than one at a time?


= two planes flying overhead instead of one. No. I never could and I think even two or three would not make a very exciting shot.
08/11/2012 09:28:08 PM · #12
Originally posted by DrAchoo:

... and I think even two or three would not make a very exciting shot.

image_full
08/12/2012 12:46:00 AM · #13
For people with clouds you can go here. NASA
08/12/2012 12:49:01 AM · #14
OOOOO just walked out the door and saw 2... 11:47 central time.. they said we may have as much as 80 to 100 per hour in a couple hours..
08/12/2012 01:15:45 AM · #15
Originally posted by jmritz:

For people with clouds you can go here. NASA


Volume warning.
08/12/2012 01:39:03 AM · #16
Originally posted by Cory:

Originally posted by jmritz:

For people with clouds you can go here. NASA


Volume warning.


What you say?
08/12/2012 12:59:03 PM · #17
Well, Caden and I took a 20 minute drive to dark skies and watched between 2:15 and 3:00AM. We had haze on the horizons, but a clear overhead and counted 37 in 45 minutes with a few being fairly bright. The best was probably the second one we saw which left a good streak and had a distinct flash at the end of its life. I did bring the camera, but only to document the evening rather than try to capture something.

Watching the skies

Message edited by author 2012-08-12 13:08:52.
08/12/2012 01:12:31 PM · #18
Bah -- full marine-layer overcast here until well after sunrise ... :-(
08/12/2012 02:44:14 PM · #19
We drove an hour Northeast, just beyond the major light pollution. Dark enough. 12a to 1:15a, we counted 40, slowed down with the moonrise (over Victorville)) as we had some clouds the were reflecting plenty of light. When I was kid, the Orange County skies were dark enough to easily see the grandeur of the Milky Way, now we need a nearly moonless night to see the major constellations and the brightest stars.

We set up the chairs off the Pearblossom Highway <we were past the fence on the gravel road, the view is nearly due North>, and we were about 20 feet from a freight line about 8 minutes into a 16 minute exposure when a train passed through. We only had about 20 seconds or so to move further away, as it didn't sink in that the train we heard a minute, or so, earlier was about to rumble through. That was an experience, 95 cars, took about several minutes to pass through. Unfortunately, I was distracted, and forgot to set the focus ring to hyperfocal distance; so I have a 16 minute blurry frame. The prior frame was a test image trying to determine the exposure using a nearby bush as a test subject. The wind was strong enough to keep the plants moving, so I thought it would be fun to try and get some foreground blur in the frame; I should have just left the focus ring alone as the unexpected train was a bonus, and it would have been a great image to document the night.

I didn't bother to try and photograph a meteor. Too infrequent, and I didn't want to spend an hour shooting 20 second exposure hoping to get lucky! I think if we had driven further East in to the Mojave, past Barstow, we would have had a much darker sky, but I'm not sure that would have made a huge difference in the frequency of the meteor sightings.

The bright ones were amazing, and a few left trails that were visible for a handful of seconds. Definitely worth the effort. By the time we got home, the second act was starting; Venus, the Moon, and Jupiter lined up in the East, just over our horizon.

08/12/2012 04:29:12 PM · #20
We saw a handful before we turned in for the night at around midnight. One was rather spectacular with a full trail that lasted a second or two. The best part, though, was the girls screaming "I saw one!!!" and getting quite excited about the whole ordeal. Might have been better had the girls been the teenagers camping with us, but they were in one of the campers doing this with smartphones while the adults were laying on our backs on the beach watching the sky.... :-)

Also saw naked swimmers. Camera was safely locked in the trunk of my car, though.
08/12/2012 04:36:53 PM · #21
I was too lazy to leave my yard, not to mention I'm not keen on going to remote places alone at night, so I just snapped some shots from my deck. I live in a pretty dark location in central New Mexico. At most I may have seen 4 or 5 per minute, but not consistently; there would be many minutes at a time where I saw nothing. I used the interval timer shooting feature and let the camera do its thing while I watched the sky. I too saw some that were fairly bright with trails that lasted a few seconds. One was rather greenish, and that happened to be one I caught in one of the images.
08/12/2012 05:23:53 PM · #22
We were out at 4:00am and saw lots of small ones, and a couple of very bright and long ones with glowing trails behind. We live within 1/4 mile of a well-lit interstate exit, so dark skies were not part of the picture. I did a few 30sec exposures but never caught one, so dropped that idea and "just enjoyed the show." Not spectacular by any means, but pretty cool indeed.
08/12/2012 05:52:18 PM · #23
Originally posted by cgino:

I was too lazy to leave my yard, not to mention I'm not keen on going to remote places alone at night, so I just snapped some shots from my deck. I live in a pretty dark location in central New Mexico. At most I may have seen 4 or 5 per minute, but not consistently; there would be many minutes at a time where I saw nothing. I used the interval timer shooting feature and let the camera do its thing while I watched the sky. I too saw some that were fairly bright with trails that lasted a few seconds. One was rather greenish, and that happened to be one I caught in one of the images.


Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1029416.jpg

Impressive!! I like how the orangy clouds contrast the blue sky.
08/13/2012 10:46:26 AM · #24
Here's one example of how it can be done. Really nice work there.

ETA:
Here's another. A little more highly processed, but beautiful nonetheless.

Message edited by author 2012-08-13 13:44:26.
08/13/2012 01:37:51 PM · #25
Originally posted by JamesDowning:

Originally posted by cgino:

I was too lazy to leave my yard, not to mention I'm not keen on going to remote places alone at night, so I just snapped some shots from my deck. I live in a pretty dark location in central New Mexico. At most I may have seen 4 or 5 per minute, but not consistently; there would be many minutes at a time where I saw nothing. I used the interval timer shooting feature and let the camera do its thing while I watched the sky. I too saw some that were fairly bright with trails that lasted a few seconds. One was rather greenish, and that happened to be one I caught in one of the images.


Impressive!! I like how the orangy clouds contrast the blue sky.


Thanks, James!!
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