June Swallows a Fly Chasing Comets

June Swallows a Fly Chasing Comets

I think my favorite photos to take are those where light and dark are strongly contrasted such as this photo of the sunset and storm.  Or a comet in the night sky.

Its not often you get to photograph a comet that appears in the night sky every 6800 years. I have been trying to think of interesting places to photograph Comet Neowise.  The only problem is after experiencing a dry spell and clear skies, Amarillo is suddenly cloud central!  But June and I love a good storm to photograph.  So we have storm chased while trying to find a hole in the sky to catch the Comet.

Chasing storms and a place to shoot the Comet on back country Texas Roads.


Amarillo was going to be cloudy the night I wanted to shoot the comet. I asked June if she wanted to a road trip. She loved the idea.  We loaded up our best friend Cujo (our 14 lb dog) and busted out of Amarillo toward the nearest hole in the sky which was three hours away near Seymour Texas. 

If you are on Instagram here is recording we did while on the road. 

June swallows a fly

There are a few more videos of us on the the road there as well. June and I have a lot of fun on the road.



I want to brag on June a bit.  This was her two years ago.  She was in the middle of chemo.  She had several inches of bone removed from her spine along with her bottom ribs from a grapefruit size tumor on her spin from Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma.  And to make matters worse, the surgery left June with some nerve damage and learning to walk again. In learning to walk she stumbled and she broke her foot and was in a wheel chair. 

Notice the smile?  Strongest woman I know.  Smiled and sang through it all.  We cried at times but this lady teaches me to live every day.

St. John's Abandoned Church at sunset.

When I was looking at the forecast for a clear sky to see the Comet, I checked one of my favorite locations to photograph, St. John's Church in Bormarton, Texas. 

Bormarton is a ghost town that largely doesn't exist.  Really other than a few homes (with people living in them) the only building left of the town which was abandoned in the 1950's is St. John's Church.  

The Comet Neowise High above St. John's

St. John's is ideal for photographing the night sky.  It is 15 miles from the nearest town (Seymour Texas).  Seymour only has 2700 or so folks living there.  It has a nice museum and the folks are very friendly.  Past Seymour, the next town of size is my home town of Wichita Falls nearly 60 miles away.  So light pollution is minimal here.

The Milky Way over St. John's

We met some friends there.  John Ambrose of Wichita Falls and Israel Guajardo met us at the church.  Both are amazing photographers  Click Israel's name to go to his website.  Israel is one of June and my best friends and one of my favorite artist.  So any time we get to see him is a treat. 

June wanted to see inside the church.  Just about the time she got to the door, John yelled out, "Watch for Snakes!"   As soon as he said snakes, June turned around and came back and made me promised we would go back to explore in winter.


The inside of St. John's Lit by the morning light through the stained glass. Photo from a previous trip.


I knew the comet was there.  Science has not failed me yet in gazing at the stars.  But the dying light of day hid the comet for a while.  I found it with my camera before I could see it with my eye.  But in short time the comet and tail were plainly visible and stunningly beautiful.


Do you like YouTube?   Check out this link for a time lapse of this this photo showing the Comet's movement.


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Photo of Comet Neowise from earlier in the month.
We drove about 6 hours in total to catch a comet and some lighting but we had so much fun.  Road trips with June are like that.  Lots of laughter and deep meaningful conversations peppered with silliness.

We got home at 4 am.  The trip back was an adventure.  We counted 7 deer and three feral hogs.  One hog seemed as tall as our hood.  For the stretch of back country road we averaged 45 miles an hour for all the critters jumping out at us.  Check out the video we made on the drive home.  Be sure to follow us on Instagram.
You might have noticed the 20% off coupon.  I am going to do that weekly for the photos from our adventures just for you who are on my newsletter.  I also have some special giveaways planned for August.  

I hope your week is wonderful and that you and your family are safe and happy.
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