Full Moon Over the Bonneville Salt Flats

July 11, 2012


Photographer: Patrick Wiggins
Summary Author: Patrick Wiggins; Jim Foster

Flying back from Wendover, Nevada to Salt Lake City, Utah on the evening of July 3, 2012, I was entranced by the appearance of the full Moon hanging low in the eastern sky. The Bonneville Salt Flats are in the foreground with the Cedar Mountains in the background. The Moon appears to be in the middle of the rising Earth's shadow, from the observer's perspective, sandwiched between the tan-colored salt flats and the pink-tinged Belt of Venus. Note that the Moon is not being eclipsed by the Earth's shadow. The pinkish color is a result of a mixture of the deep blue of the Earth's shadow and sunlight reddened by the long path length of light at sunset. The vigorous wind caused a number of little sandstorms at ground level, giving a pleasing texture to the salt flats. The photo was taken through the open window of my Cessna 172, some about 1,000 m above the surface.

Photo details: Camera Maker: NIKON CORPORATION; Camera Model: NIKON D70; Lens: 28.0-300.0 mm f/3.5-6.3; Focal Length: 28mm (35mm equivalent: 42mm); Aperture: f/3.5; Exposure Time: 0.020 s (1/50); ISO equiv: 400; Exposure Bias: none; Metering Mode: Matrix; White Balance: Auto; Flash Fired: No; Orientation: Normal; Color Space: sRGB; Software: Adobe Photoshop CS5 Windows.