Monday, 13 July 2009

Mauna Kea's shadows and reflections

Some more pictures from the other evening on Mauna Kea, this time shadows and reflections. The first shows those anticrepuscular rays again although this time without the shadow of Mauna Kea. They were hardly visible to the naked eye and even in a single photograph they were hard to see, but this is a combination of three exposures combined using HDR techniques which helped to make the rays more obvious. This was taken well before sunset and the sun was still too high for a shadow of the mountain to form...

...but half an hour later the sun was about to set. With the sun so low the summit was an intense red and the shadows of the tourists watching the sunset were visible on the summit's west-facing slope. To the left the shadow of Mauna Kea was very obvious but now the sunlight was not shining through clouds so the anticrepuscular rays had disappeared.

I've taken a few pictures like this in the past, mainly just for a bit of fun! The windows on UKIRT's dome extension are silvered so they reflect almost as well as any mirror, but I'm sure a few tourists wondered what I might have been doing taking pictures of some windows rather than enjoying the setting sun. Anyway, the UH 88-inch telescope is to the left, Gemini to the right. That ugly building in between is the summit lunch hut which, fortunately, is not used at night!

Facing the other way allowed a shot of the twin Kecks and the thick layer of cirrus above that was to make observations so difficult later on.

8 comments:

Protege said...

I remember when you posted the last window reflection shot with the snow reflecting, that was a beautiful picture.
You are getting to be close to a professional in your photography.:)

Keera Ann Fox said...

Lots of interesting photos. The red on the mountain peak is quite stunning. Nice to have you back behind the camera, Tom!

Tom said...

Protege - I'm absolutely nowhere near being a pro photographer, but I really do appreciate the complement! I don't get many of those these days!

Keera - thank you! There's a period which only lasts 2 or 3 minutes when everything turns really red on the summit and if you capture it on camera you go back and wonder about your settings, but it really is bright red for that short time. Most people miss it as they're getting ready for the sun to actually set.

Keera Ann Fox said...

I'm glad you didn't miss it, because that red is amazing!

Joan Iona said...

Wow, these are beautiful....I commend you on a wonderful job....aloha

Tom said...

Aloha, Joan, thank you for your comment, complement and for stopping by!

Tom

aloha said...

Aloha Hawaii! These pictures remind me of the dream vacation I had in this state. I'd go back anytime.

Tom said...

Aloha, aloha!

All I can say is that I hope you have another dream vacation in Hawaii sooner rather than later. It's a very special place.

Tom