Visibility V / V
In short: Perhaps the Sky Guard's first fairy flash image with wit?
For the most part:
Sunday 29.6. I was returning to Finland from a few weeks of American travel. The longest flight on the return journey from Dallas to London began its ascent shortly after sunset at 21:10 local time. The window seat on the left side of the plane offered great scenery with colorful horizons and twilight rays right from the start.
Gradually, as the plane reached its travel height, the view began to change as the horizon blurred and the crescent moon intensified. The rising moon was at times almost closed in the wing, and it was easy to follow the movements of the plane with it. Soon the flight attendants brought food to the front and I decided to take a break from observing and photographing the scenery.
However, the food break did not last long when the silhouette of a high cloud predicting thunder appeared on the horizon. Had to dig out the camera again and start tuning the reflection shield to the window.
And when the lightning finally started just before ten, it was at times like an unbroken strobe flicker. American meining!
However, the plane toured the larger front quite far and the air pits remained mild. Perhaps fortunately, because when examined afterwards, it could have been this storm that also caused tornadoes:
However, taking more traditional flash photos was difficult because long focal lengths are quite tricky in airplane use: a swinging plane and thick windows are not a very functional combination. With wider lenses, on the other hand, even a spectacular storm will be muffled if there is too much distance.
However, I remembered the fairy flashes so I pointed the field of view of the 40mm lens a little higher than usual. The cloud front filled approximately the bottom quarter of the image, with the top consisting of the starry sky. I didn’t set my hopes very high though, but let’s try it now though, I thought.
And luckily I tried.
Texas time at 23:21 grabbed one of the pictures of something red.
Kejasalama. Or as the locals call it, red sprite.
During the 1.6-second exposure, the plane has tilted slightly, making the stars streaks and clouds foggy, but luckily the fairies themselves only last milliseconds so they don’t shake very easily. As a nice bonus, you can also find subtle northern lights and maybe even an air glow in the picture.
Larger version of the image behind the link: http://sikaheimo.com/kuvat/astro/redsprite-sikaheimo-20140629-1920px.jpg