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Bosque by Twilight Star Trails | by Fort Photo
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Bosque by Twilight Star Trails

To best view star trails please view large on black.


This is a 15 minute exposure of star trails above one of the main pools at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge. I took this when it basically first looked fully dark outside and I was still able to catch color from the remains of the earlier sunset. The color is as it came out of the camera with noise reduction applied. I was amazed at my luck in catching what looks to be a meteor/shooting star in the upper left!


Edit: I stand corrected it looks as if this was an equally cool to catch Iridium Flare! My frame finished up at 7.37 pm MST per my EXIF, but in reality it was 6:37 pm MST as I had my D70 clock one hour fast since it had not been corrected for Daylight Savings Time. This means the exposure started around 6:22 pm MST and the Iridium Flare was forecast to occur at 6:33:07 pm... Ding, ding we have a winner! Major props to Walt K and fdecomite for correctly calling this. I called it a meteor thinking it was a leftover Leonid.


You can tell the hotter stars by their streak's blue color, with cooler ones coming in more red. What amazed me is that star trails would come in this good so soon after sunset. I attribute the nearly new moon and the low light pollution of this area in New Mexico, but suffice it to say I will be experimenting more with this technique in the future.


We've just returned from a week's vacation to Bosque, I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving holiday!

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Taken on November 23, 2006