Category Archives: Outdoors

Light Pollution

Light Pollution

Photo: NASA and NOAA. Click to enlarge.

The natural night skies as seen from Earth are awe inspiring. But ever since the invention of electric lighting, unobstructed dark skies have been disappearing from industrialized, populated areas. Sadly, most people living in the white areas of the picture above have never had a chance to experience the firmament’s full glory.

More information about light pollution and the importance of fighting it:

http://www.darksky.org

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Flight Of The Owl

Since observing an almost invisible owl flying in complete silence during a starlit winter night, I have been fascinated with how nature’s stealth birds fly. How aerodynamic are they? See for yourself:

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Chasing Ice

See this documentary on the big screen! Visually stunning, impressive and eye-opening!

Official web site and showtimes: http://www.chasingice.com

Another clip:

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Solar Eclipse

While hiking in the woods yesterday, I spontaneously decided to build an improvised pinhole camera to see the solar eclipse. Materials used: a roll of toilet paper, some aluminum foil I found in a trash can, a notepad from my backpack, and of course, my trusted Swiss army knife. Here is the resulting contraption and the image it produced:


If this does not impress you, here is a more professional image taken by the European Proba-2 microsatellite. (Hey, it cost a bit more). Credit: ESA/Pierre Carril.

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Crossing The Bridge to Nowhere

Trekking up and down the East Fork of the San Gabriel River last weekend, through intense heat and about 20 wildwater crossings, we found the mysterious Bridge to Nowhere.

Bridge to Nowhere. Sheep Mountain Wilderness, California. 34°16′59″N 117°44′48″W. Click to enlarge. Photo: Reinhard Kargl, 2010

Why is there a bridge in the middle of the wilderness?

I was wondering too.

Built in the San Gabriel Mountains in 1936, the 120 ft (27 m) high bridge was supposed to be part of a road connecting the San Gabriel Valley in Los Angeles County with Wrightwood in San Bernardino County. But the road was never completed.

After being overcome by a flood in March of 1938, the road construction project was abandoned.

The bridge remains, leading nowhere. It is accessible only on foot.

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