Comet C/2020 F3 NEOWISE over Four Peaks

Posted by E.J. Peiker on Thu Jul 09, 2020 7:56 am

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Comet NEOWISE - Arizona
GFX-50S, 250mm (approzimately 200mm FF equivalent), ISO 1600, f/4, 2s

After seeing several photos appear over the last couple of days of Comet C/2020 F3 NEOWISE I spent a couple of hours yesterday figuring out this shot.  I knew that the comet becomes visible in the early hours from the comet’s rise at about 3:30AM until the sky gets too bright around 4:50AM and that it would rise in the Northeast.  The most prominent feature to the NE in my 50 mile vicinity is the 7000 feet plus Four Peaks.  After figuring out how to convert equatorial declination and right ascension to where exactly the comet would rise and then figuring out exactly where I could get a high enough vantage point to have an unobstructed view of Four Peaks, I ventured off on the 30 mile journey at 3:00AM.  The one thing that Google and Ephemeris do not tell you is plant growth so I am glad I got there well before my anticipated time to take my shot (which I figured would be around 4:30 in order to get some color to the east and the comet above Four Peaks) to find a vantage point in the dark.  My research efforts paid off big time with this photo taken at 4:43AM…

(Please click on the image to see it against a darker background)

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by david fletcher on Thu Jul 09, 2020 12:38 pm
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Looks like your research and efforts paid off handsomely EJ. Brilliant!
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by Ron Day on Thu Jul 09, 2020 2:40 pm
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The image is stunning – well worth your preparation. Congrats.

by Dan Kearl on Thu Jul 09, 2020 4:41 pm
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I love when planning and execution come together on things like this.
A really fun part of photography.

by John Labrenz on Thu Jul 09, 2020 8:06 pm
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Well planned and executed.
Been waiting for clear skies here for the last 4 days to catch a glimpse of Neowise

by Swissblad on Thu Jul 09, 2020 8:26 pm
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Terrific image EJ - thanks for walking us through the process.
You are fortunate to have such clear unpolluted skies!

by Cynthia Crawford on Sun Jul 12, 2020 5:06 am
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An amazing shot and a terrific description of how you got it. The mountains are a perfect setting for this, as is the rising sun. Brilliant!
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