Gin Gin Space Observatory – Star Gazing.

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This is the moon rising over Gin Gin, Western Australia.

We drove ourselves an hour out of Perth to the little known Gin Gin Space Observatory (it wasn’t open) but we decided it would be the perfect place to set up and watch some stars.  Luckily the front gate was open, so we parked in a safe place and set up our blanket and pillows.  We were hoping to see the milky way, but the moon was blazing (it was fire orange).

In Western Australia there is very little ambient light when you get into the countryside…When we lived on the farm in Eneabba, we were able to soak up the night sky from the comfort of our front porch…nearly every night the milky way was sprawled across the sky above us.  Now, we made the observation that we literally had to drive an hour to get this view.  Just another reason why we miss the farm…

We stayed and photographed the sky for about an hour, the night was chilled and the sand soft between our toes.  Mike lay on the blanket watching satellite swing past, while I spent the better part of an hour photographing the silhouettes of trees against the light of the moon.

It’s incredible how much you can record from the sky… what looked like a cluster of three stars, was in fact hundreds.  The camera captured light I couldn’t observe with my own eyes. In the dark we could hear sometimes hear animals moving around us.  As we prepared to leave Mike noticed a few owl in the head lights of the car.  They were white and small.

It’s in moments like these that I reminisce about my father showing me the constellations from our driveway.  Orion’s belt was the first I ever learned of, and I always take note when I look up at the night.  Last night I recalled the time he packed all 5 kids into the car and drove to a grassy field outside of our city to view Kohoutek Comet… (I was too young to appreciate the significance of this moment at the time).

We’ve decided we’ll come back next month when they have a proper viewing of the milky way through their telescope.  I can only imagine what it will look like in closer detail…  Stunning I’m sure.

This adventure was all a by-product of a film we saw earlier in the day.  Yesterday in the afternoon Mike and I went to watch Interstellar, directed by Christopher Nolan. If you’re interested in getting a snapshot of our observable universe, please take a look at this post below.

It put’s our lives into perspective (just as the film does). (it’s not scary)

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