The annual Dark Sky Festival got underway across the North York Moors on Friday just as Storm Dennis arrived on the shores of the UK.
Holding a festival at this time of year, especially dark skies is always always comes with risk. The one thing that can never be predicted in the weather, however in previous years we have had some amazing conditions and clear skies.
On Saturday evening, I was at the Walled Garden in Helmsley, delivering the first of my events. I always make sure that the venues that I use have the facilities to not only deliver the presentation but there is enough space to complete some practical photography tuition. I thought this was going to be the case on Saturday. It was torrential rail as guest arrived and during the first hour and a half of the evening. However as as soon as we finished the presentation and were having our half time chocolate the rain stopped. Whilst we still had cloudy skies, it enabled us to get outside and use some of the teaching aids that I had brought along. Everyone was learning, good times were being had by all. Then as if by magic, the skies partly cleared. Watery stars became visible and then for about 15 minutes the skies we had a clear view of the plough and other skies. It is always the best feeling when you hear the glee in clients voices as they take photos of the stars for the first time and they are in focus.
This week, I have 2 events at Castle Howard. The first on Friday is sold out but at the time of writing there are a couple of places left on the Sunday event. If you are interested, you can book directly at www.castlehoward.co.uk I finish this years festival back at the Walled Garden on the 28th February.