It doesn’t always work

The plan was to take some pictures of the full moon. I’ve done it before, but never with the Canon. Simple enough plan; stay up ’til the moon rises, and fire off some shots. Just for fun I’d use the Nikon as well, because it has the longer lens and can ‘get really close’.

You could say that things started going wrong quite early in the day. About 5:30 AM, which is when the zoo decided I should get up. I’ve been missing a lot of sleep lately, and the metaphorical pebbles were tumbling now. It got worse as moon time approached.

For one thing, we don’t get sun or moon rising or setting at the ‘prescribed’ times. Thanks to the mountainous terrain, we lose about an hour on either side. Moon rise was to be 8:33 PM. Add an hour and it’s nearly quarter to ten when the globe shows its face through the trees. By this time I’m in trouble; it’s debatable which was blurrier, my eyes or my mind. Obviously I wasn’t functioning well enough to figure out this wasn’t going well, because I did it anyway.

Two cameras. One with a really long zoom capacity, the other with a couple of different lenses to try. Shoot, shoot, shoot! And when you see the results, SHOOT! They’re all shot, because I was shot to begin with. Multiple images on multiple cameras with multiple lenses and not one single image worth saving. I was goofing up the exposure (wrong ISO, shutter speed, aperture), goofing up the focus (couldn’t remember how to manual focus the Nikon, couldn’t see the focus on the Canon), and knocking the cameras about when trying to frame and shoot. What an unmitigated disaster!

Well moon set the next morning was too early to try then (5:59 AM, meaning it’d be invisible before 5:00 for me here). The next day – rain. So much for this month’s full moon.

Like I said, I’ve done it before. I even shot the “blood moon” eclipse last Winter, where the biggest problem was the camera battery freezing up in our -30ºC temperatures before the cycle could be completed. (From fully charged to not working in about 30 minutes. Warmed up overnight; fully charged in the morning.) I just wanted to try the Canon on moon light. Oh well, maybe next month.

Here’s the only shot saved, full-frame, taken with the Canon and the entirely manual M42 mount Soligor zoom @ 280mm (roughly 448mm equivalent on 35mm camera) and f3.5:


I could digitally crop this, and then you’d see how really fuzzy it is. Maximum aperture is not great on the Soligor, and stopping down isn’t possible as it has no manual control.

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