Before I give you an update on Galactic50: A photography project, I would like to say thank you to everyone who followed me this past summer. It was a long trip and your support was needed and very well appreciated. The amazing love everyone showed all my pictures gave me the motivation I needed to complete this epic journey. Now onto the update. In my last post, I had started my journey back east. I had multiple routes planned for the way home, to try and beat the weather. I had enough time that I could spend multiple days in one spot, but the list was long and I still needed the weather to cooperate. After the Badlands, I headed north to Minnesota. It only took about 3 hours for me to reach some of the darkest skies I have seen since the beginning of this trip. Needless to say my hopes were not very high.
I set up camp and knew I was there for at least 3 days according to the weather, so I settled in. On my second night, as I was getting ready for bed, I stepped outside for a quick look and to my surprise I finally had some clear skies. Due to the day and half of downpour, I had not done much scouting but I did find a cool dock to set up on. I was excited and my hopes were on the rise for the rest of the trip.
The next day, I packed up (in the rain) and moved on to Wisconsin. I had a clear night forecasted for me and I actually started to believe the trip home could be way better than the trip out. That night I was able to get some great shots and with success two nights in a row, I was overly optimistic.
The next morning I got up and tried to plan the rest of the trip. At this point I had already given up on going back to Kansas and Nebraska due to storms and was heading north to avoid them. But, one look at the weather forecast and it wasn’t looking good. I had 10 days left and it became very clear the weather was not going to cooperate. The route home was littered with major thunderstorms and really bad weather for as long as I can see. But, I still had a clear night ahead of me in Michigan, so off I went.
Michigan was simply beautiful. Lake Michigan was one of the greatest nights I had, in regards to shooting the Milky Way, the entire trip. I will have a dark sky post about Michigan out for everyone shortly, but I wanted to provide an update of the entire trip first. As great as the night at Lake Michigan was it would be the last clear sky I would see this trip. The route home forecast only got worse and worse every day and it became obvious that this leg of the trip had come to an end.
While the weather wasn’t the greatest this summer, my trip was out of this world 🙂 I saw all of the Northern US and got to explore some of our darkest skies as well as some of our many National Parks. Even with all the weather, the trip was a great success. I have a lot of pictures to go through and a ton to process, so do look out for more pictures coming your way.
392 Hours behind the wheel (18 full days)
Avg MPG: 27.0 (Yes its a Jeep)
3 Oil Changes
23 States Visited
Completed Galactic50 States:
Ohio, Iowa, Nevada, Colorado, Idaho, Indiana, Minnesota, Michigan, Oregon, Wisconsin
Favorite Image from the trip not the Milky Way, so far: