Before I went out there, I had several ideas for what I wanted to try to shoot that I can't do at home. One of the main ideas was to try to get a nice star field shot. At home, since I'm in the middle of what William Gibson once called the Boston-Atlanta Metropolitan Area, it's difficult for me to get away from light pollution. If you see a night shot of the United States from orbit, the entire east coast is lit up. Once you combine that with the depth of the atmosphere and the general humidity, it's a really bad mix.
One day (actually it was the middle of the night) while I was out there, I was sitting at the desk in my hotel room, and decided to give it a shot. I pulled out my iPad and started up Sky Safari to see where the Milky Way was. I looked down at the compass that I had on the desk and got an idea, so I headed out to the Volcanos Day Use area of Petroglyph National Monument. The park closes at 7PM, but the gate closes at 5, so there's an outer parking lot to use if you're going to be there later. About 15 minutes before I got there, these clouds (truth be told, it could have been smoke from a wildfire in the SW corner of the state) started moving in. Since the park was closed, I was not going to go in, just stay in the parking lot, and try to get the Milky way trailing down onto one of the volcanoes. I popped off a couple shots, chimping the entire time, which I usually try not to do (chimping- def.: constantly looking at the LCD on your camera, saying ooh ooh ooh.). I was basically disappointed by what I saw, but know better than to believe it until the shots get loaded onto the computer and I can view them on a better display.
When I got home, I was pleasantly surprised.
On the back of the camera, the glow from the city was overwhelming. When I opened it up on my real display, I really did say ooooh. I'm glad I didn't delete it out of hand.