Nature near and Far

July 20, 2021

This week, we have been having thunderstorms almost everyday. Plus it has been so hot and humid and usually cloudy. I had been waiting for clear skies and no moon to try out using a star tracker.

Last Friday night the skies were clear with little or no wind and no moon. I took the opportunity to drive to a favorite location where skies are relatively free from light pollution. The darker the better, in order to photograph deep sky objects, in this case, the Andromeda Galaxy.

All the important steps went according to plan: Polar aligning for accurate tracking, focusing, and finding the target. I turned on the tracker, and it did it’s job beautifully, which is moving with the rotation of the Earth to prevent star trailing, allowing you open the shutter longer to catch more light. I was extremely pleased!

I was really looking forward to getting home to see how they looked on the big monitor. When I started downloading, they downloaded way too fast because I had forgotten to reset to raw format after using jpeg earlier! Boy, did I feel foolish and disappointed. Well, what can I say…%!”?#! I decided to share the image anyway, as it IS my first deep sky object. Can’t wait to get back out there and try again.

A short timelapse of a storm off in the distance. On this night, clouds rolled in after I had returned for a second try at the Andromeda Galaxy, so I did this instead, as I waited to see if the clouds would go away, but they never did. Nature near a far.