Last night, after crawling into bed with Heather to watch a sitcom, my phone buzzed. It’s not often that folks call me in the late hours, so after the show was over, I hopped out of bed to find a message from my friend Shea excitedly telling me about the Aurora. He hasn’t let me down with reports of northern lights in the past, but just to be sure, I headed to Facebook to see what the crowdsourced space-weather report looked like: tons of people were chatting up the lights.
Not wanting to miss out on epic action, we bundled up and walked to the end of the street, seeing the sky aglow with the wisps of light. While the lights were certainly present, they were a bit bland to the naked eye – the truly amazing show had been earlier when the message was left. Not wanting to miss out on a return event, we went back home, tucked Heather into bed, and I headed out to make some photos.
Shea and others had been texting through the night encouraging and tipping each other off to aurora awesomeness in the case that we were not keeping eyes peeled to the sky… (Sometimes driving to a new location means that you miss the most amazing display ever.) It was nice to know that someone else was out in the cold and enjoying the sights. In a strange way, it’s kind of like that song in Fievel Goes West. Anyhow, back to last night.
After standing in the Mendenhall River for around an hour and thirty minutes, I was able to capture a variety of shots, and eventually headed back to the road where Shea had showed up. We stood and talked for the next hour or so making a few frames, and also gathering images for a time lapse video. Eventually I made it home, offloaded images, and was able to slip under the covers at just shy of 4am. Today has been a day of caffeine!
Take a look at what I came back with – shown in chronological order:
And lastly, the time lapse video. This was at ~2am for an hour. 400 frames, each at ~8sec/ea. Playing at 15fps.
Take a look at the larger versions by clicking on an image or heading to my 2012 Fine Art gallery.
Yesterday, while out for a bike ride we sped by a handful of dry-suit clad students and a couple of instructors. It’s that time of year for UAS’s Swift Water Rescue course. Over the past several years, I’ve wanted to go out and get a few action shots, but for whatever reasons hadn’t seen them in action. Today I went out with camera in hand to see what I could find. It was a fairly strong rain for Juneau standards for the 2-3 hours I was out there; I was drenched, my gear was soaked, but it was a ton of fun. For spending multiple hours a day in 34˚ F water, these folks were pretty chipper!
Anyhow, take a look. We’ll see if I head out tomorrow. If I do, I’ll be sure to bring my raincoat!
UPDATE: Day 2 was much dryer (well… for me, not the students!) You’ll see an additional 10 images below. Enjoy!