Friday, 6 August 2010

Flarey Dancers

After warnings of a big solar flare and reportings of the Mirrie Dancers displaying the night before from about 1.30am until 2am I decided to set my alarm tonight to try to see them and catch them on camera.

I have never done any night time photography so I stuck my cameras on a tripod, removed auto-focus, set the timed shutter release, set it to auto-shutter and apperture, went to bed and hoped for the best.

My alarm went off at 1am with me initially wondering while on earth it was going of at that time of night! A moment later my foggy head remembered and I sneaked out of the house, noticing the sky was definitely flashing, wow this would be great.

Climbing up the hill to avoid the annoying street lights my hopes were dashed. It was the Sullom Voe flare stack reflecting of the partially clouded sky, not the northern lights at all, but still pretty mesmerising.

Not all was lost. It was warm, still and nice to be out on a promising night with not too much cloud cover.

I waited taking some pictures of the effects of the flare stack and the stars. So many stars I couldn't pick out the few constellations I do know. Saw a satellite or two and think I caught a shooting star in the corner of my eye.

So here are a few pictures of the night, but only flarey dancers, and blurry dancers at that. Well they would be blurry with light and cloud movement over the long exposure.

Stars and cloud over the house

Any one with tips for night time photography with a Nikon D50? Or the best way to catch the Mirrie Dancers if they do appear??

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