3 Days: Hammock Camping Under a Harvest Moon

The summer just flew by.  Even though I’ve been out hiking, kayaking and camping all year, it feels like I haven’t done much!  So, since I worked on Labor Day I took my 3 day weekend this past week. With my normal days off being Fridays and Saturdays I decided to take Thursday off and head out late Wednesday to Frances Slocum State Park in Luzerne County Pennsylvania. That extra few hours on Wednesday makes it feel so much longer, probably because there’s no need to rush the following morning.

img_20160914_192919I got to the park and headed to camp site 95 in the walk-in tent section and got my hammock up and grabbed a bite to eat just before the Sun set. I was eager to test out some gear… some new and some I just hadn’t had a chance to try out yet. I recently purchased a new Paria Outdoor Products Sanctuary SilTarp after my recent backpacking trip. I was looking to shed weight in any gear I could and this tarp is only 15oz packed. So I got to test that out. I also gave my DIY emergency blanket under quilt a try… still needs some work but it’s a good start. Early in the year I found a steal of a bargain on an Exped Scout Hammock Combi for $68, usually goes for more than $200. This was the first time I used that, for 1 night anyway, I switched back to m ENO Doublenest for nights 2 and 3. I also gave my new Fire Knife from Light My Fire a good test… took a lot of practice to get the hang of, but I’m getting better with it. Continue reading

3 Days: In the ADK’s

In 2015 I started doing a lot of 3 day adventures. I did 1000 miles in April as a road trip to Virginia, Assateague Island in Marland and Delaware, I did 3 separate 3 day trips to various Pennsylvania State Parks throughout the summer and then in October I did 9 days planned as 3 segments – 3 days to Acadia National Park,  3 days in Acadia National Park and 3 days from Acadia National Park as a New England road trip.

So far in 2016 I hadn’t done or planned any 3 day trips. The fact that the weather turned this most recent trip into 3 days was a happy accident. Right now you may be wondering why 3 days? Well, it’s just long enough to have time to do a lot and still short enough to cause some urgency… Continue reading

Supermoon 6.23.13

Taken with Canon T31 and Rokinon 500mm Mirror lens using 2x doubler (1000mm total)

Taken with Canon T31 and Rokinon 500mm Mirror lens using 2x doubler (1000mm total)

Well, even though I had an extra day off this week, it was still a long work week and I didn’t get much time for taking pictures. I did, however, get out for the Supermoon earlier this week. I took this with my Canon T3i using my Rokinon 500mm lens with the 2x doubler attachment boosting it up to 1000mm. It was a little hazy here that night so this isn’t as clear as I would have liked.

I also tried something a little different by using a technique called “stacking”. Stacking, if you are unfamiliar, requires taking many photos of the subject and then, through several different programs stacking the photos to increase sharpness and detail. I followed the procedure I found at this blog http://www.photographyblogger.net/shoot-the-supermoon-like-an-astrophotographer/

Moon at 1000mm

1000mm Moon

 

For the first time since I got my Rokinon 50mm Mirror Lens the Moon is visible tonight (the weather here in Pa has been pretty crappy). So, I decided to grab my camera, the 500mm and the 2x doubler and grab some shots of our closest neighbor. I can’t wait for the Super Moon coming up on June 23!

Finally!

So, it’s been quite a while since I’ve posted any photos, but that’s about to change! I just recently had a birthday pass and decided to buy myself a little present. I got myself a Canon EOS Rebel T3i. I’ve been doing a lot of research on entry level DSLR’s and have had my mind set on this particular camera for a while. The T3i, at least for me, was the best bang for the buck, plus it has a swing out, pivoting display which is handy for those awkward shots. My old Sony Cybershot had a swivel screen and it’s amazing how much of a advantage it can really be. So… here are a few early shots I’ve taken while getting comfortable with my new gear, no editing has been done these are just straight from the camera… enjoy!

Picture taken at Nay Aug Park in Scranton with a Canon T3i with 18-55mm lens and 10x Macro adapter.

Picture taken at Nay Aug Park in Scranton with a Canon T3i with 18-55mm lens and 10x Macro adapter.

 

Taken at Nay Aug Park in Scranton with a Canon T3i and 18-55mm lens

Taken at Nay Aug Park in Scranton with a Canon T3i and 18-55mm lens

Taken at Nay Aug Park in Scranton with a Canon T3i and 18-55mm lens.

Taken at Nay Aug Park in Scranton with a Canon T3i and 18-55mm lens.

Taken at Nay Aug Park in Scranton with a Canon T3i with a 18-55mm lens and 10x Macro adapter.

Taken at Nay Aug Park in Scranton with a Canon T3i with a 18-55mm lens and 10x Macro adapter.

Taken in Dunmore Pa with a Canon T3i with a 55-250mm lens.

Taken in Dunmore Pa with a Canon T3i with a 55-250mm lens.

 

 

 

Composite Shots

Click to enlarge

I figured that while I was on the Moon kick, and I don’t currently have a camera good enough to get good pictures of it, I’d make my own cool photo! So, I took a photo of the Ponce Inlet Light House I took a couple of weeks ago and stitched it together  with a photo I grabbed of the moon about 5 years ago… technology is amazing.

The light house part of the photo was taken with my little Kodak M532 point and shoot and the Moon photo was taken with my old Kodak P850, I used the open source image editor GIMP to put them both together. A little image trickery, I know… but I am rather pleased with the end result.

Ghost in the Moon Light

Click to enlarge

The night (or should I say early morning) before the Supermoon I decided to go out to the beach and play around with the limited long exposure settings on my little point and shoot. I was able to get some OK pictures of the Moon and Saturn while they were in close proximity, and a couple decent, but distant photos of Mars setting in the west… but I can never resist the chance to make a ghost photo! Ironically, there are reports of a ghostly figure that wanders this particular stretch of the beach.

A couple of months ago, I was heading out to this very same spot early in the morning, around 2-2:30am to catch a glimpse of Venus, Saturn and Jupiter all in the sky together as well as a meteor shower. As I was coming over the dune cross over I encountered a couple standing at the top of the stairs. The man turned to me as I approached and asked “You’re not going out there are you?” I kind of chuckled and replied that it was indeed my intention to head out to the beach. He then, reluctantly advised me that, it may not be the best idea. When I asked why, he told me that while he and his girlfriend were standing their having a smoke, they witnessed what appeared to be a person coming down the beach… now before I continue, I’ll set the scene a bit. The Moon was just setting in the west and was casting some light on the beach from behind the dunes, this particular stretch of beach is a conservation area and therefore no condos allowed, just houses. About a half mile north is a fishing pier and beyond that is the glow of Daytona Beach. The beach itself was fairly narrow as high tide was just ending.

This couple swore to me that they saw a person heading south on the beach, all they could see was a shadowy outline. They say it was clearly visible about 2 blocks away, and then vanished, reappeared about 300 feet from them and then vanished again. The man repeatedly retraced the track of the mysterious figure with his pointed finger, saying it moved faster than a person could walk but didn’t appear to be running it just “…phased in and out, it was creepy”. I’ll be the first to admit that I want to believe in stuff like that, and I’ve seen my fair share of odd and unexplainable things, but in this case I think they simply saw someone riding a bike down the beach with no lights, and they were crossing in and out of the shadows the Moon was casting of the dunes…. but, you never know.

It wasn’t until the next day that a friend of mine who was raised in the area confirmed that there have been numerous stories and reports of a ghost on the beach.

Supermoon 5-5-12

Click to enlarge

Tonight the moon is at its closet point to earth in its orbit, a Supermoon. Appearing 14% bigger than an average full moon, they always appear biggest near the horizon. So, I packed up some gear and hit the beach to watch it rise, and to capture some time lapse footage as well. I figured I might as well get something posted for now, if the time lapse turns out good enough… I’ll share it.