Blood Moon FAIL in the Blue Mountains last night - (PICS)

Go down

Blood Moon FAIL in the Blue Mountains last night - (PICS)

Post  nero_design on Mon Jul 30, 2018 12:19 am


The last Blood Moon that I photographed - in 2014.

I reside in the Sydney outer Suburbs.  The last Blood Moon that I photographed was back in 2014 and I caught it briefly by driving up to the Mountains via Bells Line of Road.  There was a 12 second long gap in the clouds that allowed me to take this picture (above) while I was in the process of setting up at the Bellbird Lookout at Kurrajong - before the clouds closed in and rain forced everyone there to flee again.  That was "Partial" eclipse - which means the moon wasn't quite completely red... but it was still magnificent.  I had hoped to catch a very clean image of the moon in Total Eclipse yesterday with a much more powerful lens... but the clouds ruined it for me.  Apparently the folks on the coast at North Sydney got a fairly good view of it sitting just above the Clouds.  But not me.  I made the mistake of driving towards the mountains.

I had five locations to choose from and they were all at least one to two hours drive from my home.  Driving to the goldfields regularly in past years had me watching for vantage points for any future photographs.  And this has given me a number of alternative places to set up camera lenses for an event like this one.  I use a website called The Photographer's Ephemeris (Google it and bookmark it if you think you might be able to utilize it... it's FREE and you don't need to download anything) to determine exactly where the moon would be setting during the middle of Totality and it aligned perfectly in the valley behind the Hydro Majestic Hotel at Medlow Bath.  I had been there last week to have High Tea with my wife and some of her friends and used the opportunity to scout for suitable views in the South West.


The view from the Hydro Majestic Hotel includes a panorama of the Megalong Valley.


High Tea at the Hydro Majestic is actually fairly popular.  The view from the wide windows is spectacular.


Everyone serves fresh scones in the Sydney Blue Mountains.  These were the ones I had with my High Tea.


A screen-cap of where the moon was going to be setting (dark blue line) when standing at the lookout at the carpark of the Hydro Majestic Hotel.

I had technically picked the best location for the setting moon: The Sydney Blue Mountains (which was at the Hydro Majestic Hotel, looking South-West through the Megalong Valley) ...but a rising wall of cloud blocked my view of the moon as it began to eclipse.  I had left home early in case of delays on the road.  So I drove to the Three Sisters lookout at Katoomba and walked down to the tourist lookout with one of my cameras and a wide lens.  The valley was pitch black at night.  Without moonlight or sunlight, you could only make out the cloud overhead and some stars in the distance. A single couple had been waiting there in the 6C chilly air to see the Lunar Eclipse and they didn't really seem to know what to expect.  I spoke with them briefly before leaving so I could set up at the Hydro Majestic carpark at the nearby district of Medlow Bath.  


The view as my eyes saw the valley.  Everything was in shadow.  The moonlight was cut down and diffused by the clouds..


Clouds moving across the moon just as the first phase of the eclipse began.  Mars can be seen here (just a speck near the moon).


The view of the unlit Valley at the Three Sisters Lookout at Katoomba at 3:00am with a longer exposure. A huge wall of cloud was moving across the moon.

I thought I was the first person there when I arrived ... but I saw another man wandering around the bushes that were just out of range of the bright lights there in the carpark.  He looked a little sinister.  A short while later I saw that he had set up a telescope overlooking the Megalong Valley and was waiting for the moon to appear.  Then another chap drove up and brought out his camera and tripod.  Within about 20 minutes, more cars arrived and people walked up to us who were well wrapped to keep warm.  A number of folks turned up with DSLR cameras but no tripods and they seemed to realize their error when they took some test pictures.  Everyone agreed that focusing on the moon was going to be the hardest thing if the clouds did not part for a sufficient amount of time.


The near-empty carpark.  People were gathering to the left of the red car, in the shadows.


My camera lens was set up with a lens heater because the temperature was supposed to drop to -4C, but it didn't.

Quite a few people turned up so there was about 20 of us standing around drinking hot chocolate and tea, waiting for the red moon to appear in a gap in the clouds... but it barely showed.  Some people were locals.  Others had traveled here from long distances. Most had an interest in Astronomy or Photography.  Some were roped into coming along because of all the press coverage of the Eclipse.  The alignment and length of the Eclipse was the first of its kind in 1200 years.  The next full Lunar Eclipse alone wasn't due for several more years. This was the second closest visit from Mars in 60,000 years.  There were quite a few reasons the "brave the cold".  But the moon only once peeked out from the clouds and even then it was mostly obscured.  Everyone took a picture when it did.  It looked like the angry end of a lit cigarette but faded within a few seconds and was lost.  The sky was getting lighter since the sun was rising.  In the end, we all packed up and left.  I then drove to the lookout at Govetts Leap (near Blackheath) which was about 8km away and caught the sunrise which I knew was going to occur with the morning light coming through the valley facing North.


My only glimpse of the moon as the initial part of the Lunar Eclipse began - was in the sky behind the Hydro Majestic Hotel at 4:40am.

When I turned up at Govetts Leap lookout, the carpark was filled with people who were waiting with their own cameras.  There were at least 30 other photographers within sight and about 15 of them were clustered around the railing overlooking the valley.  A little kid was screaming at his sibling, pretending to be an airplane.  A man behind me remarked that we could enjoy the silent beauty if someone threw him into the abyss below.  Belbirds chimed and early rising parrots could be heard in the trees below.  Behind is the child that identified as a jet fighter continued to screech and scream it his sibling.  His mother ignored him.  I barely had time to set up and had to put my camera bags on the dirt.  I set up two tripods and tried to avoid blocking anyone else's view while watching that nobody bumped into my own gear.  Some people clamped their lenses to the safety rail and it was a LONG drop down if there was a mishap.  As soon as the sun crept above the horizon it was swallowed by clouds again and everyone left.  I stuck around for half an hour before getting the last shot (see bottom image).  There was just enough light to illuminate a little detail in the valley below.  * Remember not to look through a viewfinder if you're pointing your camera in the direction of the sun, especially with a zoom lens.


First gleam of sunlight at dawn - from Govetts Leap (at the district of Blackheath).


The sun cresting the edge of the valley. (Canon EOS 6D + EF 24mm f/1.4L USM II lens).


The view from my iPhone 6S.  I was stupid to leave one of my cameras pointed at the sun like this.  Hopefully there was no harm done.


Tourist signage at Govetts Leap Lookout - with a note that Charles Darwin visited the site in 1836, years before Gold was discovered just an hour's drive from here.


Using a different lens and camera after the sun had started rising above the clouds. (Canon EOS M6 + EF-M 11-22mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens)


The Photographer's Ephemeris predicted correctly where the sun would rise (YELLOW LINE) if I stood at Govetts Leap Lookout.

The cool thing about using The Photographer's Ephemeris site is that it can tell you PRECISELY where the sun and moon will rise and set from.  Each and every day, you'll notice that these positions change slightly.  The location the moon rises and sets from changes due to the orbit... and the same applies to the sun's position.  So if you want to align a shot of the moon (or sun) with a tree, building or location, you can at least predict where you need to stand with your camera.  Once you figure out which buttons to use it's very easy.  

I was fortunate to get an advance look at the Lookout at Govetts Leap the week beforehand.  This enabled me to drive to the precise spot and to try to make Lemonade from the Lemon that was supposed to be "the greatest celestial event in our lifetime" (I'm still skeptical of this claim).  Govetts Leap doesn't often show up on a car GPS because it's not considered a Street Address - but if you select "Places of interest" or "Places nearby" it should come up.  All the locals know where it is and so do most landscape photographers.  Sunsets there are pretty but not as breathtaking as the sunrises from this location.  At different times of the year the sun rises behind a gap in the valley and it will illuminate the valley in a way that defies description.

As for the Lunar Eclipse, I was disappointed that despite planning for this event over a year and a half ago, I saw nothing.  The last few major eclipses (both solar and lunar) have been completely blocked by cloud in recent years... and the same applies to some of the Comets that were briefly visible in out Southern skies.  I hope to see the next Lunar Eclipse due in 2021.


The view from Govet's Leap at sunset the week before reveals the viewing platform lookout at Pulpit Rock (on the left) - which is a finger of rock extending out over a 765 foot drop.


One of our friends (Simone) was happy to step out onto the viewing platform at Pulpit Rock Lookout the week before.  Govetts Leap Lookout is in the distance on the right.


The view North towards Mt Tomah from Pulpit Rock Lookout last Sunday.
avatar
nero_design
Contributor Plus
Contributor Plus

Number of posts : 1988
Registration date : 2008-11-18

Back to top Go down

Re: Blood Moon FAIL in the Blue Mountains last night - (PICS)

Post  Jen on Mon Jul 30, 2018 11:52 am

That was fantastic reading through and looking at your photos
Thankyou for taking the time to share it with us all

Even though the clouds got in the way, grrrr.. clouds seem to do it each time.
It was still a great effort. Much appreciate you sharing with us all

The look out looks spooky.  affraid  it’s amazing how whoever built it, how they did it. Wouldn’t get me walking out there with no guard rails  Very Happy
But what amazing views

Now for those scones. Hmmm you made me hungry.

Q32  again   Q38

_________________
Be happy everyone Lifes to short

Cheers jen.
avatar
Jen
Management

Number of posts : 634
Registration date : 2017-06-16

Back to top Go down

Re: Blood Moon FAIL in the Blue Mountains last night - (PICS)

Post  piston broke on Mon Jul 30, 2018 11:06 pm

Nero, your work is of the highest standard. Thanks for sharing. cheers Pete.
avatar
piston broke
Contributor Plus
Contributor Plus

Number of posts : 1531
Age : 59
Registration date : 2011-05-07

Back to top Go down

Re: Blood Moon FAIL in the Blue Mountains last night - (PICS)

Post  slimpickens on Sun Aug 19, 2018 6:19 am

[quote="nero_design"]

The view from my iPhone 6S.  I was stupid to leave one of my cameras pointed at the sun like this.  Hopefully there was no harm done.

 How so Nero? Does something get burnt....like the screen?

_________________
Will chase the Golden Goddess  till she finally wears me out!
avatar
slimpickens
Management

Number of posts : 3651
Registration date : 2010-08-04

Back to top Go down

I managed few photos of July event from Ensay in Victoria using Olympus E-M1 Mark ii

Post  robplum on Sun Aug 19, 2018 7:48 am

nero_design wrote:
The last Blood Moon that I photographed - in 2014.

I reside in the Sydney outer Suburbs.  The last Blood Moon that I photographed was back in 2014 and I caught it briefly by driving up to the Mountains via Bells Line of Road.  There was a 12 second long gap in the clouds that allowed me to take this picture (above) while I was in the process of setting up at the Bellbird Lookout at Kurrajong - before the clouds closed in and rain forced everyone there to flee again.  That was "Partial" eclipse - which means the moon wasn't quite completely red... but it was still magnificent.  I had hoped to catch a very clean image of the moon in Total Eclipse yesterday with a much more powerful lens... but the clouds ruined it for me.  Apparently the folks on the coast at North Sydney got a fairly good view of it sitting just above the Clouds.  But not me.  I made the mistake of driving towards the mountains.

I had five locations to choose from and they were all at least one to two hours drive from my home.  Driving to the goldfields regularly in past years had me watching for vantage points for any future photographs.  And this has given me a number of alternative places to set up camera lenses for an event like this one.  I use a website called The Photographer's Ephemeris (Google it and bookmark it if you think you might be able to utilize it... it's FREE and you don't need to download anything) to determine exactly where the moon would be setting during the middle of Totality and it aligned perfectly in the valley behind the Hydro Majestic Hotel at Medlow Bath.  I had been there last week to have High Tea with my wife and some of her friends and used the opportunity to scout for suitable views in the South West.


The view from the Hydro Majestic Hotel includes a panorama of the Megalong Valley.


High Tea at the Hydro Majestic is actually fairly popular.  The view from the wide windows is spectacular.


Everyone serves fresh scones in the Sydney Blue Mountains.  These were the ones I had with my High Tea.


A screen-cap of where the moon was going to be setting (dark blue line) when standing at the lookout at the carpark of the Hydro Majestic Hotel.

I had technically picked the best location for the setting moon: The Sydney Blue Mountains (which was at the Hydro Majestic Hotel, looking South-West through the Megalong Valley) ...but a rising wall of cloud blocked my view of the moon as it began to eclipse.  I had left home early in case of delays on the road.  So I drove to the Three Sisters lookout at Katoomba and walked down to the tourist lookout with one of my cameras and a wide lens.  The valley was pitch black at night.  Without moonlight or sunlight, you could only make out the cloud overhead and some stars in the distance. A single couple had been waiting there in the 6C chilly air to see the Lunar Eclipse and they didn't really seem to know what to expect.  I spoke with them briefly before leaving so I could set up at the Hydro Majestic carpark at the nearby district of Medlow Bath.  


The view as my eyes saw the valley.  Everything was in shadow.  The moonlight was cut down and diffused by the clouds..


Clouds moving across the moon just as the first phase of the eclipse began.  Mars can be seen here (just a speck near the moon).


The view of the unlit Valley at the Three Sisters Lookout at Katoomba at 3:00am with a longer exposure. A huge wall of cloud was moving across the moon.

I thought I was the first person there when I arrived ... but I saw another man wandering around the bushes that were just out of range of the bright lights there in the carpark.  He looked a little sinister.  A short while later I saw that he had set up a telescope overlooking the Megalong Valley and was waiting for the moon to appear.  Then another chap drove up and brought out his camera and tripod.  Within about 20 minutes, more cars arrived and people walked up to us who were well wrapped to keep warm.  A number of folks turned up with DSLR cameras but no tripods and they seemed to realize their error when they took some test pictures.  Everyone agreed that focusing on the moon was going to be the hardest thing if the clouds did not part for a sufficient amount of time.


The near-empty carpark.  People were gathering to the left of the red car, in the shadows.


My camera lens was set up with a lens heater because the temperature was supposed to drop to -4C, but it didn't.

Quite a few people turned up so there was about 20 of us standing around drinking hot chocolate and tea, waiting for the red moon to appear in a gap in the clouds... but it barely showed.  Some people were locals.  Others had traveled here from long distances. Most had an interest in Astronomy or Photography.  Some were roped into coming along because of all the press coverage of the Eclipse.  The alignment and length of the Eclipse was the first of its kind in 1200 years.  The next full Lunar Eclipse alone wasn't due for several more years. This was the second closest visit from Mars in 60,000 years.  There were quite a few reasons the "brave the cold".  But the moon only once peeked out from the clouds and even then it was mostly obscured.  Everyone took a picture when it did.  It looked like the angry end of a lit cigarette but faded within a few seconds and was lost.  The sky was getting lighter since the sun was rising.  In the end, we all packed up and left.  I then drove to the lookout at Govetts Leap (near Blackheath) which was about 8km away and caught the sunrise which I knew was going to occur with the morning light coming through the valley facing North.


My only glimpse of the moon as the initial part of the Lunar Eclipse began - was in the sky behind the Hydro Majestic Hotel at 4:40am.

When I turned up at Govetts Leap lookout, the carpark was filled with people who were waiting with their own cameras.  There were at least 30 other photographers within sight and about 15 of them were clustered around the railing overlooking the valley.  A little kid was screaming at his sibling, pretending to be an airplane.  A man behind me remarked that we could enjoy the silent beauty if someone threw him into the abyss below.  Belbirds chimed and early rising parrots could be heard in the trees below.  Behind is the child that identified as a jet fighter continued to screech and scream it his sibling.  His mother ignored him.  I barely had time to set up and had to put my camera bags on the dirt.  I set up two tripods and tried to avoid blocking anyone else's view while watching that nobody bumped into my own gear.  Some people clamped their lenses to the safety rail and it was a LONG drop down if there was a mishap.  As soon as the sun crept above the horizon it was swallowed by clouds again and everyone left.  I stuck around for half an hour before getting the last shot (see bottom image).  There was just enough light to illuminate a little detail in the valley below.  * Remember not to look through a viewfinder if you're pointing your camera in the direction of the sun, especially with a zoom lens.


First gleam of sunlight at dawn - from Govetts Leap (at the district of Blackheath).


The sun cresting the edge of the valley. (Canon EOS 6D + EF 24mm f/1.4L USM II lens).


The view from my iPhone 6S.  I was stupid to leave one of my cameras pointed at the sun like this.  Hopefully there was no harm done.


Tourist signage at Govetts Leap Lookout - with a note that Charles Darwin visited the site in 1836, years before Gold was discovered just an hour's drive from here.


Using a different lens and camera after the sun had started rising above the clouds. (Canon EOS M6 + EF-M 11-22mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens)


The Photographer's Ephemeris predicted correctly where the sun would rise (YELLOW LINE) if I stood at Govetts Leap Lookout.

The cool thing about using The Photographer's Ephemeris site is that it can tell you PRECISELY where the sun and moon will rise and set from.  Each and every day, you'll notice that these positions change slightly.  The location the moon rises and sets from changes due to the orbit... and the same applies to the sun's position.  So if you want to align a shot of the moon (or sun) with a tree, building or location, you can at least predict where you need to stand with your camera.  Once you figure out which buttons to use it's very easy.  

I was fortunate to get an advance look at the Lookout at Govetts Leap the week beforehand.  This enabled me to drive to the precise spot and to try to make Lemonade from the Lemon that was supposed to be "the greatest celestial event in our lifetime" (I'm still skeptical of this claim).  Govetts Leap doesn't often show up on a car GPS because it's not considered a Street Address - but if you select "Places of interest" or "Places nearby" it should come up.  All the locals know where it is and so do most landscape photographers.  Sunsets there are pretty but not as breathtaking as the sunrises from this location.  At different times of the year the sun rises behind a gap in the valley and it will illuminate the valley in a way that defies description.

As for the Lunar Eclipse, I was disappointed that despite planning for this event over a year and a half ago, I saw nothing.  The last few major eclipses (both solar and lunar) have been completely blocked by cloud in recent years... and the same applies to some of the Comets that were briefly visible in out Southern skies.  I hope to see the next Lunar Eclipse due in 2021.


The view from Govet's Leap at sunset the week before reveals the viewing platform lookout at Pulpit Rock (on the left) - which is a finger of rock extending out over a 765 foot drop.


One of our friends (Simone) was happy to step out onto the viewing platform at Pulpit Rock Lookout the week before.  Govetts Leap Lookout is in the distance on the right.


The view North towards Mt Tomah from Pulpit Rock Lookout last Sunday.


robplum
New Poster
New Poster

Number of posts : 3
Registration date : 2012-01-23

Back to top Go down

Re: Blood Moon FAIL in the Blue Mountains last night - (PICS)

Post  Kon61gold on Sun Aug 19, 2018 10:10 am

Shame the whole event didn't go the way you would have wanted it to Nero, none the less, spectacular photography of part blood moon, rising sun & surrounding landscape.
Thank you for sharing it with us. cheers

Cheers Kon. T25
avatar
Kon61gold
Management

Number of posts : 2766
Age : 56
Registration date : 2008-10-16

http://golddetecting.forumotion.net

Back to top Go down

Re: Blood Moon FAIL in the Blue Mountains last night - (PICS)

Post  Willo on Sun Aug 19, 2018 10:38 am

Hi Nero I can only chime in and say I know how frustrating this must have been, it happened to me with the Jan 2018 eclipse which I had planned to shoot out at Wee Jasper on some private property selected because of its unusual rock formations.

I got lucky this time, but I have had to postpone quite a number of my astrophotography workshops this last month and as I am going overseas for an extensive time later this year, including to Iceland, its getting problematic.

I really hope it comes through to you next time.

Ian
avatar
Willo
Contributor Plus
Contributor Plus

Number of posts : 275
Age : 54
Registration date : 2011-09-04

Back to top Go down

Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum