Back From West Texas

After six hours in the car, I’m now back in Austin! Peter and I spent the last several days at the Mcdonald Observatory, which is up in the Davis Mountains:

McDonald Observatory

The idea behind the trip was that he was supposed to collect five nights worth of data on the 107-inch telescope in the foreground of the above image, and I would keep myself occupied by writing and doing a bit of photography. Sadly, it was pouring down rain part of the time, and cloudy most nights. But by the end of the trip the weather improved somewhat, so Peter got data on three of his target galaxies, and I took 1,175* pictures.

I’ll post a few of my favorite shots here on the blog over the next few days, once I’ve had time to sort them out.

* Yes, really. I was up in the mountains with not much else to do for 5 days, and came back with exactly 1175 pictures, or about 2.3 gigabytes. In my defense, many of these pictures were bracketed exposures (so that I can try to generate some HDR images), and a fair chunk of the others were a series of long exposures taken around midnight (which I’m hoping to combine to generate an image with star trails).

6 Comments:

  1. I love the picture you’ve got up now! Looking forward to more

    Me too!

  2. OMG, I’m not the only observatory widow on LJ!

    The one time I went with him to Mauna Kea, there was a storm and the snow line went below the base camp for the first time in 20+ years. I couldn’t even go up to the summit just to see it.

  3. Thanks! Coming up next, sunrise!

  4. Those look awesome. I suspect that might become a week-end project.

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