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Sunday, 9 May 2010

Star-trail attempt at Beecraigs

Travelling for a while in the pitch, black of night, Dhana and I finally reached Beecraigs Country Park where we thought we would have peace and quiet to take our 45minute long photos of the starry, night sky.

Your hearing picks up when you can't see a thing and I could hear people talking. I was convinced there were people in the woods but, how could I have heard people as we were in the middle of nowhere? Wind in the trees, perhaps?

We set up our cameras as quick as possible and got ourselves back into the car, lights off and doors locked. I had a small baseball-style bat with me the whole time. We got the flask of hot-chocolate out, which is almost impossible to pour when you can’t see what you’re doing, and ate about 2 crisps before things started getting exciting.

FIREWORKS!!!! In the field, right next to where we were. It does explain the voices that I heard, which makes me feel less of a paranoid scaredy-cat. We decided to keep the cameras running as the fireworks weren’t going into the sky but were flaring all colours at low, ground-level. They were behind the cameras and far enough away from us that they shouldn't affect the shots.

15 minutes later and a car comes past with full headlights on (understandable as we were sitting in the pitch black). It saw us, slowed down and I thought it was going to stop but it went on a bit. The shots were ruined so we got out of the car to retake the shots when we saw the car reversing. 'Get in the car....GET IN THE CAR!!!'
The two of us failed to get our tripods down quick enough so we stuffed ourselves and the fully-open tripods with cameras on the top into the car and locked the door. Not without a bit of a comedy struggle, I might add. The car went by us slowly but drove away. Phew!

We'd been laughing about taking some 'rabbit in the headlight' shots for some of Dhana's Reportage images, as well, but there was not a chance that we were getting out the car again. LOL!!!!

When I think about it now, it was probably just a voyeur hoping to see something fun but I think a safer location is in order for the next attempts of star-trail photographs.

Here is the only shot I have, affected by the car headlights. It would have been such a good star trail shot if I'd had the full 45 minutes (except for the pylon lines that I thought I’d managed to avoid). Sigh!!

Hopefully we’ll try this again soon and with more success.


Dani said...


the more I think about the funny shots the more I want to do them for reportage, so I'm going to keep a close eye on the skies. And think of another location. How about Balerno? Hmmm.

Miriam said...

Ah well, the night wasn't really in vain...