Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Venus Transit Version 2.012

   Woke up this afternoon to partly cloudy skies but soon the clouds thickened and looked to be threatening rain.  The rain never came and as promised by the Clear Sky Chart website, LEMP Clear Sky Chart the clouds parted shortly after the 6:05 PM EDT start of the last Venus transit until 2117.  I packed up my Celestron C-8 telescope and couple of cameras  and headed out to Pt. Mouillee State Game Area Headquarters to photograph and videorecord the event.
    Thanks to Dana, Robert, Emily, Donnie for coming out to witness the event with my wife and I.  Emily actually ran into her cousin out there who happened to be there fishing.

  Here is a video I shot as the Sun and Venus began to disappear behind the treeline.

  Because my scope was tracking the Sun during the recording of the video, it along with Venus appear nearly motionless as the trees on the horizon rise to cover them. Not your typical perspective of a sunset .  Of course the sun doesn't actually rise and set, the horizon does.


  1. Brilliant capture, Mark! Best I've seen so far. We almost came down to look for you, but were watching the live stream from NASA.

  2. Thanks, I was having my doubts about the cloud cover breaking when I left my house around 5:30. I was just hoping for one opening through which to get some shots. About 6:30 the clouds began to dissipate to nothing more than an occasional wisp.

  3. Great shots, Mark! Wish I could have joined you!!!!

  4. Thanks. Mercury will have a couple of transits this decade, first in May 2016, then another in Nov. 2019. They're not as rare as Venus transits and the smaller size of Mercury makes it less impressive.