A low bar

As mentioned earlier, Friday’s outing also produced some sunset colors – more so than normal, but that’s not hard to do in this region of NC, at least. Somebody set the ‘Clearing’ setting for the sky to ‘Sunset’ and so the skies are typically wiped free of clouds at about that time. This time around, the cache was a bit slow in emptying and there remained just a little to work with.

But not much in the way of foreground interest, so I struggled to find something, which is also evident.

unidentified beetles against twilight colors
The sun itself went down still bright and yellow, and it took a while for the high-altitude clouds to change color, so I played with what could be found on the still-bare branches of the trees along the lakeshore. I have no idea what these beetles were, but they were tiny, at least enhancing the presence of the new buds.

unidentified spider silhouetted against sunset color
And a spider, placed against the background striations meticulously. Which just goes to show, there’s only so much you can do with some subjects, but I was just waiting out the meteorology.

waxing crescent moon alongside woodpeckers' nest tree
I felt a little obligated to do this one, since that’s the woodpeckers’ nest from last year (the one on the right; the one on the left is the moon.) Between those two branches alongside the moon sits the opening, though facing away from us since I was on shore to get this framing, and the opening isn’t visible from shore. Venus was likely becoming visible at this point, but it would be hidden behind the trunk. What you might have found, beneath that upper branch, is a jetliner catching the sun over the horizon.

waxing crescent moon and Venus against faint pink clouds
That’s Venus down towards the bottom of the frame. It shows phases too, but it largely takes a telescope to see them, so I checked with Stellarium – this time it was a gibbous. I’ll nail a crescent one of these days.

And finally, the wide shot to show off how well the sky developed:

sunset colors over Jordan Lake showing crescent moon and Venus
That’s… okay, enough to make the wait worthwhile, but it could easily be better. Gets that tropical vibe without anything even remotely tropical in the picture. Well, that’s not true, because the climate of Venus (which is visible in there, but you have to look hard) could be considered, “tropical,” if you weren’t familiar with the term, “blast furnace,” though even I’ll admit this is stretching a bit. Overall, a nice spectrum of color, so it works just well enough.

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