Sunday, June 1, 2008

Offlede makes it to river just in time for Discovery liftoff

There were a few people on hand in Palm Shores to watch the shuttle lift off. But it's not exactly close to launch pad 39A, so the riverside viewing area isn't too popular.

The 5:02 p.m. launch of shuttle Discovery marked the first liftoff I haven't been able to view from North Brevard and points that are much closer to Kennedy Space Center.

Instead, I had to work. Bummer.

I skipped out for my "dinner" at 4:45 p.m., knowing I had little time to make it to the shores of the Indian River and find a prime viewing spot.

I had photographed the moon shining over the river with a boathouse in the foreground, but that was at night. I returned to that location to shoot the shuttle and discovered that there was a "no trespassing" sign posted. Oops.

But I made my way to a park operated by the town of Palm Shores. I walked to the end of a pier and planted myself on a bench two minutes before the launch. No time for tripods or video cameras.

It wasn't a popular spot for viewing, but there were some people. In fact, I grabbed the last of eight parking spots.

Some foam struck the shuttle during liftoff, the same issue that doomed Columbia in 2003. The damage to Discovery is said to be minor, but it will likely create some tense times during re-entry.

My camera has been suffering an odd error in which it prompts me to turn off the camera, then turn it back on. After browsing some Nikon discussion boards, I reattached the lens. Maybe that will do the trick.

OK. Enough with the boring stuff. Here are some more shots. Again, they're not close enough to pick up the Helvetica typeface on the shuttle.

This is as close to the shuttle as my 200mm lens would get me.

On the horizon, you can see Pineda Causeway, which leads from Palm Shores/Rockledge/Melbourne to South Patrick Air Force Base.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

A Nikon discussion board? Wonder how you came up with that.