Song Dogs,Freight Trains and a “Blood Moon”

Just got back from an over night trip to Duck Hollow Farm. I helped DiSalvo finish the work on the hunting cabin. I also wanted to take photos of the full lunar eclipse. The weather was not helping with heavy overcast, rain and snow throughout the day.

Nightfall and the clouds were still heavy but there were a few breaks— enough that I set the alarm for 11:45 pm to see if there was any hope. When I awoke from the ‘cat nap’ at 11:30, there was considerable light coming through the cabin windows. I went out on the cabin’s porch and saw the skies had cleared and there was a very bright full moon.

As I was setting up the tripod and mounting the camera ( Molly’s 40D) and the 600mm with 1.4 extender, a freight train came down the tracks that are about a mile from the cabin. The engineer sounded the horn at the crossing and the coyotes ( aka song dogs) joined in with that lonely sound that only trains and coyotes can make. Hearing it took me back to being a child and staying with my Grandpa and Grandma Coatney. They lived along the Sands Spring Line  and in those days, you didn’t have to go far to find coyotes. My grandfather raised greyhounds and used them to run coyotes off the property during the day.

Like most things in life, the lunar eclipse was a trade-off. I gave up a fair amount of sleep to learn a few things about how to photograph a lunar eclipse……ok, I gave up more than 6 hours :). I dashed off some of the shots and put them on the blog— I still have to work on the better ones but all in all– I’m glad I saw the event. In some ways, it is more dramatic viewing it with the naked eye and you come to realize just how fast the Earth rotates as well as how much light the ‘normal’ full moon puts out compared to the eclipsed moon.

For those of you that might wish to try your hand at a full lunar eclipse, the next one is October 8 of this year. I think Molly will try her hand and hopefully I will get to get a few cat naps in between shots. I know I will always enjoy the freight trains and the coyotes.

a short slide show

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2 thoughts on “Song Dogs,Freight Trains and a “Blood Moon”

  1. Thanks for sharing it on your blog Bill. I missed this round of this event but will not miss the next one. But shots like yours and the stories behind it is always a treat.

    Cheers.

  2. Thanks Scott
    It was a neat experience and I’m still ‘sleep deprived’ 🙂
    I wish the skies had been clear at moon rise. I used The Photographer’s Ephemeris software ( free download) to try and get a foreground of trees and or the cabin with the full moon as the background.
    Kings Lake also would have been an option for a reflection shot.
    Maybe next full moon.
    Hope you are out making some of those great images you do and having fun.

    Bill

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