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To the West was a heavy thunderstorm with lightening moving quickly to the south.Before reaching Cochrane I turned right at the top of the hill on Township road 262 (entrance to Retreat) and drove a short way down the road.At ISO 1600 my exposures ranged from about 2 to 8 seconds. Longer exposures result in less defined rays due to the blurring effect of the moving curtain of lights.However, I wanted to shoot some longer exposures as well in order to try and capture lightening flashes in the distance.24 mm F1.4 Exposure 5 seconds ISO 800 In the distance I could see lightening flashes.24 mm F1.4, exposure 6 seconds, ISO 800 Purple Spikes visible to the naked eye shot up vertically into the sky.I put my lens in manual focus mode, turned it until the bright light or star was as small as possible - this is infinity focus.
On August 5th in the evening we experienced several thunderstorms with hail, but the sky appeared to be clearing to the north west of the city.
Anyone can subscribe to an Aurora Alert and be notified by email (free) or by phone (monthly charge) when there is a good chance of an Aurora.
Aurora forecasting is essential because the protons and electrons released from the sun in a coronal discharge (explosion on the sun) can knock out power generators potentially costing millions of dollars to fix and can also be dangerous to astronauts in outer space.
I pulled over at a mail box and could see the Aurora in the north sky.
I set up my Canon 5D Mark II camera with 24 mm F1.4 lens wide open and set the ISO at 1600.