She’ll Be Flyin’ Round the Mountain When She Comes

She'll Be Flyin' round the Mountain When She Comes

Steven Christenson

Mission Peak Preserve, Fremont, California

Canon 50D, Canon 16-35mm f/2.8 L II, Gitzo Carbon Fiber Tripod, Manfrotto RC4 Ball Head; Processed with StarStax software, and Picasa3 on a Windows PC.

A 4 mile hike up to the shoulder of Mount Allison at 2,500 foot elevation allows the capture of star trails and the busy airspace in the South San Francisco Bay, California. Short exposures are necessary to keep the sky glow manageable (Here I combined 45 44-second exposures). During the summer dense low night and morning fog knocks down the heavy light pollution in this area. From a vista above the fog blanket the Milky Way can be clearly seen – but only if one is willing to hike in the night which I do often. Under normal conditions it is hard to see even a 3rd magnitude star.

James D. Lick Observatory on 4,360 foot tall Mount Hamilton lies approximately 12 air miles away to the South West

The terrain is far too steep to attempt to carry anything more than camera gear but the views are worth the effort!

Indeed, my work from here was recently featured on Public Television (see