Much has happened – I’ll proceed in reverse chronological order.
Last weekend My Mermaids, me, my Brother, and my Dad all traveled to eastern Oregon, just south of Long Creek in the Malheur National Forest, to bear witness to a fantastic total solar eclipse.
I didn’t set aside much time to plan for *how* I would experience this, my third, total solar eclipse but I knew I had to do it. I continue to be happy that I was able to see it with so much family present.
The rest of the camping trip was extremely enjoyable too.
The younger mermaids got to take nature walks with my brother the botanist, saw some interesting wildlife, and had plenty of food and amenities typically not available to the unprepared – thanks to the elder mermaid.
We all had a good chat right up until the start of the eclipse.
The Mermaids enjoyed some early views of the partial shadow in their pinhole cameras / shadow boxes.
An early attempt at taking quality pics with a peek-a-boo view through my solar glasses. Like I said, I didn’t prepare much but I made up for that to some extent with “photo hacking” and an amazing setting on my camera called Handheld Night Mode. This mode takes several images in rapid succession and, on camera, stacks them together for a crisp, decently exposed shot. It’s not perfect but it tends to work.
We were all dumbfounded by the sudden appearance and then rapidly retreating bands in the thin clouds that appeared. Thermal cause? I might submit this image to some experts for some advice.
Another through-the-glasses shot.
And another – near totality – good crispness on the sun but a massive flare of the glasses. Looks good anyway.
These artifacts – not through the glasses – were moments before totality and again using the handheld night scene. I like this shot because the green arc shows a reverse image (bounced around in the lense?) of the amount of sun visible in that super bright flare you see bottom right. Other bounced images in the lense is the green blur further up and the red hazy areas around the image.
Also notice the few red pixels top right – that edge of the sun coincides with flares I’ve seen in other images made with higher-quality equipment. Handheld! for the win.
And then totality – my second of two tries – very happy with the results.
So far, the images I’ve got here have not eclipsed the sense of grandeur I can still recall in my minds-eye when viewing this eclipse with my own eyes. The memory is strong.
We drove down in the wee hours of Saturday morning in ~8 hours and home again on Monday in ~12 hours. Our theme song for the ride home was “Life is a Highway” singing and ‘dancing’ in our cars with a select few of our highway neighbors at an average of 4mph.