Showing posts from June, 2013

Stowe Pinnacle - It's all about the light!

As I'm finishing up this hiking book, I'm thinking about what made the hikes enjoyable for me. Inevitably, my photography instincts were hard to suppress, even when hiking with just a point and shoot, and invariably the favorite hikes were during the late evening hours as I treasured being in cool places when during the golden hour and the post-sunset dusk.

The photos from the hike up Stowe Pinnacle in April was one of my favorites. I grabbed my trusty Sony RX100 and raced up the mountain less than an hour before sunset. I stayed on top taking photos until I needed my headlamp to get back down. No problem, and well worth it. Even April can be beautiful in the right light!

The Aurora Borealis Friday Night - NOT WYSIWYG

I've only seen the aurora a few times, but I'm pretty obsessed with it. I get alerts on my phone when activity is high and I check multiple websites to get up-to-date information. Even when the aurora is active and visible as far south as Vermont, there are still many factors that determine if we'll see it. Is it cloudy? Is there a moon or other ambient light? How much moisture is in the air? Do I have an unobstructed view to the north? Will it be dark enough?

Well, this past Friday night into Saturday morning, the aurora was going off. Around 10:30 pm I packed up my cameras and a few tripods and headed to up the Brownsville Trail on Mt. Ascutney to the Norcross Quarry, 1.1 miles and about 600 feet above the valley floor. It was very humid, so I hoped that by getting above the settling fog and with a perfect unobstructed view north, I'd have a great shot at seeing the aurora.

And I kind of did. Although what I saw was more of a faint glow above the lower level o…