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Frost Images of Comet Hale-Bopp

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Observers: Mack Frost, Dewey Vanderhoff, Andy Frazier
Location: Wapiti Valley, Wyoming
Date: April 17, 1997 02:45 UT

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Image of the comet taken 4-16-97 at the Breteche Creek Foundation, located in a little canyon off the Wapiti Valley west of Cody, WY. It was taken around 10:45pm MDT using a 24mm/f2.8 lens for about one-minute on Fuji 800 Super G+ film. The scene is illuminated by a Moon 2-days past First Quarter. The cabin in the foreground is called the Weston Cabin, the original homesteader cabin on the creek. The Foundation restored the cabin and uses it for their office. The comet is hanging off the face of a volcanic butte, part of a formation that runs all along the west side of the valley. The lights below and to the left of the comet belong to the Foundation's Guest House, where we had attended a small "get-acquainted" party with new staff. The line of light runing through the cottonwood trees and behind the Weston cabin is a car leaving the party. The pink and green colors in the sky along the right side of the photo are the Aurora Borialis, the Northern Lights. This display was so faint that we could not see it due to the moonlight, and only discovered it had occured after developing and printing the film. Remarkable stuff, this Fuji 800! Finally, you can make out the constellation Auriga in the upper left corner of the image. Cappella can be seen shining through the edge of the clouds straight above the comet.

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This image shows the Weston cabin in the foreground, the comet above the volcanic butte on the skyline, and the streak of light running up into the clouds is the Russian Mir Space Station. Taken with a 35mm/f2.0 lens set at f2.8 for 40-seconds on Fuji 800 Super G+. This one of a number of images Dewey Vanderhoff and myself have taken over the past couple of weeks that include the comet and Mir. This will soon end as Mir's orbit shifts and its passovers will no longer coincide with evening twilight over Wyoming for about a month.

Mack Frost (mfrost@trib.com)


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