I stopped into John Glenn Astronomy Park in Hocking Hills, Ohio last week during the day to take a 360 degree panorama and used that to create a custom Stellarium landscape for the park. Fortunately it was an overcast day so the lighting on the park was flat and even. I’m making the custom JGAP landscape files available to everyone for free.
You need really dark skies to photograph the Milky Way. Recently I’ve been so preoccupied with improving my Milky Way photography that I’ve dismissed taking photos on clear nights if the moon is out. Turns out I was missing what these beautiful, clear, moonlit nights had to show me.
May in Ohio is a mixed bag for astrophotography. Temperatures very close to dew point make condensation a concern and the Milky Way rises at about 2:00 to 2:30 AM. Do you stay up all night or get up really, really early? On the plus side, there are very few airplanes in the sky at that time of the morning. Recently we had clear skies on the night of the new moon so I got up at 1:30AM to drive down to Hocking Hills, meet another photographer, and to try out a new location and a new filter.
For the past three days there’s been a rare confluence of weather and moon that’s allowed those of us interested in astrophotography, and willing to get up at inhumane hours, a chance to capture some nice Milky Way shots. I took advantage and went to Hocking Hills twice to try a new technique, try a new location and find yet another new location to try next time the moon and weather coordinate. Read MoreStars For Days