Deep Sky Photography on the
Hidden Hill Observatory, California, USA
Any type of astrophotography requires a dark sky, which is hard to find
in northern and central Europe. Additionally, you need clear weather. What
is worth a remote dark site if you are sitting under a thick layer of clouds.
Compared to northern Europe, the California weather and sky are a distict
advantage for astronomers. This is probably the reason why nowhere
else in the world the concentration of amateur astronomers is so high than
in California. If you have the possibility to travel there and visit an
amateur astronomy club you will get good conditions for some nice observations
an photography, mostly combined with moderate temperatures!!
As an example I would like to introduce the ‘H2O’, the Hidden Hill
Observatory near Livermore, California. This is the favorite dark site
of the Tri Valley Stargazer
Astronomy Club, founded by a group of amateur astronomers from Livermore.
Located just a few hills away from the San Francisco Bay Area and protected
from any kind of humidity (see Europe!) and clouds and pretty far away
from the Silicon Valley light pollution the H2O offers the possibility
of a nice dark site for comfortable observations to its members. The place
can be reached from the Bay by car in 1 ½ hours and its possible
to bring your own telescope of any size.
Here is a panoramic 360degree image of the site. Click on the thumb
nail for a full size verion (800K)!
Click on the pictures to see full size version.
|Open house at TVS.
||Star trails over H2O.
Image: Gert Gottschalk
|View to south, April 2000.
Only a few clouds are hanging over the coastal hills.
Image: S. Fröhlich
|In 1999 one of the club members realized
personal dream, his own observatory.
|In April 2000 the telescope was mounted.
Image: S. Fröhlich
|Whereever you can drive by car , you can
bring big telescopes!
|If you stay overnight it is necessary to protect
instruments. Not against dew or rain, but dust!
S. Fröhlich and
Gottschalk, January 2001
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Astrophotography, WFS Berlin