Chasing Fogbows

I have been flying a lot in the Saddle over the last few months. It helps that I can simply leave for work early, stop off and blow through some drone batteries, before heading on to Hale Pohaku where I meet the rest of the crew for a day on the summit. The process can be reversed on the way back down the mauna in the evening after work.

On these short days late in the year this means flying right at dawn and sunset, creating very dramatic light. The rich colors are simply great for photography of this beautiful area of lava flows and cinder cones.

What makes the are even more spectacular is the cloud layer. As you drive up the mauna you pass through the clouds. I love to stop and fly right at the top of the cloud layer, where the fog lays in against the mountain. I am sorely disappointed on those mornings that the fog is not there!

The result of these flights is lot of great video, I just need to put something together to share it.

Of course a good video needs great music. I am indebted to Chris Stark, a local artist who graciously allowed me to use his track Dancing in the Rain as the backdrop for the video. I encourage you to head over to his website to check out his albums.

Chasing Fogbows from Andrew Cooper on Vimeo

Preventing Fogging in a GoPro Camera

Fogging is a real problem with GoPro cameras, particularly in diving where humidity is so often an issue. Closing the camera in a damp tropical environment, then submerging the camera in cooler water to dive a tropical reef is a sure recipe to fog the inside of the optical window.

Purging the Air
Purging the air an moisture from the GoPro case with difluoroethane
I understand the desire to keep the case as small as possible. particularly for an action cam. But why? Why could GoPro not include enough room for a small desiccant package, a few millimeters would have been enough. Yes, there are the little pieces of blotter paper sold by GoPro and others, but these are not nearly as effective at removing moisture from the case as true silica gel desiccant products that absorb far more moisture per volume. I have seen GoPro cameras fog up even when properly used with the Anti-Fog inserts.

There is plenty of room in my other camera cases for desiccant packs. I keep a good pile of desiccant on hand in nice little packets just perfect for loading into the camera cases. I put the used packs in my toaster oven for an hour at 150°F to bake the moisture out and reuse the packs over and over again. Simply store in a tightly sealed, airtight container for use.

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Postcard from the Summit – Mamane in the Fog

This is one of my favorite trees. Found along the summit access road it has enormous character, I have stopped to photograph this tree several times. Silhouette or simply in the sunlight, from just about any angle, it is simply a great tree. Even better when I catch it in the top of the cloud layer…

Mamane in the Fog
A mamane tree in the fog along Mauna Kea access road