Conditions for the Geminids and Puppid-Velids looked good, with an approximated 90-95% visibility, so I figured it’d be worth a trip out to see some meteors. Checked to see what Matthew Drinkall was up to and before we knew it we were headed out west chasing clear skies. Rocked up to our spot on Lake Wivenhoe and the moment we got out of our cars it was on. A massive reddish orange, possibly slightly bluish even, meteor streaked across the sky and the couple shortly after gave the indication it was going to be a productive night.
While hurriedly setting cameras up, there had to be another 10-15 meteors in different parts of the sky. Was pretty convenient that Matt had picked up a Nikkor AF-S 14-24mm f/2.8G ED on the same day, on impulse may I add, for his Nikon D800. It was going to get a lot of use. I spent a bit of time sharing some techniques and settings and was very curious to see how the dense high resolution sensor of the D800 would go with long exposures and noise. Looked alright on the LCD and the extra 2mm the 14-24mm had on my Canon 16-35mm f/2.8L II was noticeable.
The night proceeded to put on possibly the best sky show I’d ever seen.. The Geminids themselves seemed to have a few great ones, but it was the Puppid-Velids which were the star performers (or performing stars?) of the night! In terms of frequency, it wouldn’t be a stretch to say we witnessed 150-200 meteors? Was a bit difficult to pick where they were going to show up next because they didn’t all seem to be very obedient to the expected radiant points.
Could have done with Josh Coleman’s lens warmers around 2-3am as the air became wetter and condensation did start to present on the lenses, especially on Matt’s bulbous 14-24mm.
My favourite shot of the night, this star trail here which showed two extra bright Puppid-Velid meteors. There’s some contrast lost to condensation, but all things considered, I was extremely happy with the result.
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