Nirvana May 12, 2007

Only drug runners and amateur astronomers frequent remote abandoned airstrips on a moonless night...we were the latter. Two pro hardcore observers (Malcolm and Sebastian) and the new guy Lynn (the author). Following a clear warm up night at Oak Heights, the group moved camp to the wilds of Nirvana aka Irvine Lake emergency airstrip about 15km north of BonEcho Provincial Park. To sum it up, a magnificent site, 360 degree low horizon, flat asphalt surface, (lots of parking !!) Dark except for some minor southern glow, quiet, NO BUGS, and clear cool air followed by a coat of frost. Naked eye M13, and Milky Way from horizon to horizon, galactic views that Sebastian and the 18inch Zambuto had never seen . 3 guys peering in from the edge of the Universe. Yes its remote , youre on your own for hydro, water etc, but the vast flat and open airfield nestled in the Madawaska hills is a real treat. Lets hope this site stays protected, its one of the last dark windows open to us within reasonable reach. Sign up for the next trip, you will be impressed.

Lynn Hilborn

The images posted here are very large panorama's and all but one is 360 degrees. They range from 1mb to 6mb in size and should open in a new browser window when selected.

To view the high-res version of these images just click on the image

The light source on the horizon is south. I beleive this is Kingston. There is a faint glow above the red lights where we were observing. That is north-north east and I beleive it to be Ottawa. This was not noticeable to the naked eye, however the southern light source was noticed. Exposure for the images was 25 seconds at f3.5 using a Nikon D200 with 10.5mm lense.