This post will probably be shorter than the last one, as it continues on from it. Again, I’ll posting photos of the Mascot Mines, this time outside the visible spectrum, so read the last post if you want some history on it. I went over most of the information last time about the mine, including why it was created, the routes to the mines, the venomous spiders, the many, many, many stairs, and…

…I’m getting a feeling of déjà vu. I did mention the venomous spiders, didn’t I?  What about the cave moths?

Yeah, there’s totally moths in the tunnels. See?

2015 09 06 11;34 R _MG_8441

Actually, lets talk a bit  about that moth-

NO! I’m writing about Mascot Mines. I’m not getting distracted by seductive insects again. Seductive arachnids, maybe, but not insects. Back to the valley.

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This photo was taken along the road up the hill, looking to the west.

I’ll break it into the three channels:

2015 09 06 14;36 R _MG_8618 R
2015 09 06 14;36 R _MG_8618 G
2015 09 06 14;36 R _MG_8618 B

And here’s the gif of the three:2015-09-06-14;36-R-_MG_8618-R

Red and green are fairly similar in the foreground; the main difference is the background, more hazy in the latter. With the vegetation starting to turn brown for autumn, the green spectrum shows the meadows as a bit darker than in red. Blue is haziest, as usual, and the foliage is darkest, as usual.

And infrared?

2015 09 06 14;37 R _MG_8619
Zomei 850 nm filter

There is no haze at all in this infrared range. The sky is black, with the few clouds clearly defined. The highway is clear; it looks like a creek running through the valley.

Looking the other direction(I’m told that the opposite of west is east, so lets go with that for now), the valley looks like this:

2015 09 06 14;40 R _MG_86242015 09 06 14;40 R _MG_8624 R2015 09 06 14;40 R _MG_8624 G2015 09 06 14;40 R _MG_8624 B

Anyone want another colour channel animation? Here you go!


Honestly, the blue channel is unique enough that I can almost always pick it out of the three. This photo is no exception. Red and green can be different, but in this case? the foreground shows almost no change between the two. In fact, as much as I try, the only difference I can spot is the mountains to the east are hazier in green. The .gif file doesn’t have the palette to show the differences between the channels in the foreground, and in fact, even the higher-resolution original copy (both the .jpg and the cr2 files…) show such a minimal difference that I can’t see it without  a lot of effort.

Don’t get me talking about .cr2 files. Seriously. That’s one of the conditions of being allowed in public again: Do not discuss .cr2 files.

Instead, lets discuss infrared.

2015 09 06 14;38 R _MG_8623
Zomei 850 nm

The valley narrows here, and there is less farmland, so it doesn’t stand out as much as the view to the west. The haze is still gone, of course, but the shadows of the southern mountains, and of various clouds, mean that the infrared view isn’t as bright as in the other direction.

What about the mines themselves? I took this photo from the bottom of the complex, by the bunkrooms. 2015 09 06 12;41 L IMG_25962015 09 06 12;41 L IMG_2596 R2015 09 06 12;41 L IMG_2596 G2015 09 06 12;41 L IMG_2596 B



The glass windowpanes look like they are getting brighter in the shorter wavelengths. I don’t think that’s the case; however, the reflections of the sky are getting brighter. Looking at the lowest windows you can see that effect clearest; on the bottom left window, the reflection of the valley gets hazier as the colours move towards blue, and on the right side, the window is transparent enough that a window across the room can be seen; in that case, it seems to be just as visible in the three channels, so there doesn’t seem to be any loss of transparency.

Still, it looks like the windows are getting brighter, and the wood is getting darker(the usual trend; the shorter wavelength, the more light absorbed by vegetation). It ends up almost seeming like a strobe effect.

Unlike the valley photos, I did get an ultraviolet photo from this position, but to start with, a photo taken with my homemade short bandpass filter(allowing the camera to record UV, violet, and a bit of blue light).

2015 09 06 12;46 R _MG_8510


This was my original filter. the glass was much smaller than my current ‘mark 2’ model(If you make an improved model, always call it ‘Mark #’, as that sounds much cooler), as it was designed for optical research and not photography. If I remember correctly, it had a 12mm diamater, as opposed to my current 50mm diameter lens. This isn’t just me trying to sound ‘mathey’, it’s me trying to explain why the photo is so zoomed in and green around the edges. Because the filter was so small, I had to zoom in; otherwise, the majority of the photo was just black. Likewise, the edges were more obviously distorting the photo. The reflected light from the edges was bright green(and a bit of leaked light that didn’t pass through the filter is on the bottom left, making a bright yellow edge… look; try getting a 12mm piece of glass to fit a 52mm camera lens and see how well you do. No, I’m not being defensive! YOU’RE being defensive!). Not zooming in the photo also blew the contrast out, so a zoomed photo was the only option for a good picture.

… Okay, good might be too strong a word. The sky is washed out and bright; brigth light, through this filter, always trended towards bright yellow. Like my newer filter, it doesn’t handle white balancing well; unlike it, I’ve never even been able to fix the color correction on the computer. Th

For once, I think the ugliest photo isn’t the full UV picture.

2015 09 06 12;44 R _MG_8497
Combined Schott UG11 and BG40 filters

… I could be wrong about that. UV is still reeeeealllly ugly. The hazy sky is amped up here; even the buildings are washed out. The vegetation is almost black, as are the walls of the structures, as compared to the rock, which is only dark grey. The metal roofing is still bright, as is the sky.

I can’t tell here if the windows are more opaque, or just reflectign the hazy sky. Probably both. Glass is less transparent in the UV range, but that sky is really bright.

If I remove the BG0 filter, the UG11 by itself also lets in infrared light; it becomes a dual band filter, letting light beyond both ends of the visible spectrum through.

2015 09 06 12;43 R _MG_8492
Schott UG11

It’s still hazy in the UV range, but seems to be much clearer. I’d assume that is from the infared light affecting the image. There’s an easy way to test that, of course. Lets go infrared!

2015 09 06 12;47 R _MG_8515
Zomei 760 nm

Probably the best photo of the batch. The sky and clouds are clearly defined. The wood structures aren’t only clear to see, but the weathering is obvious below the red spectrum; faded paint, worn boards, all are clear to see. The windows are transparent, as seen by the window in the middle of the photo. Best of all, the Zomei 760 nm filter allows a faint touch of colour into the picture. It isn’t very obvious(the sky is probably easiest to see this; clear sky is a dark brown). Normally, I don’t do this, but I really like it…


…There is no Scotty. I did this myself.

2015 09 06 12;47 R _MG_8515 2

The photo almost looks like I took it with my Zomei 680 nm filter, which is much more colourful. Whatever they use to protect the wood seems to be lighter near the visible spectrum, as it appears blue here. The trees are still almost white, so it isn’t just the usual lightness of the vegetation in infrared. I don’t know what they used, thoguh. Creosote? On the bottom right, the two-by-fours holding the metal sheet are clearly a different colour; those are more modern repairs, so they weren’t treated in the same way as the older wood.

I didn’t take any other pictures of Mascot Mines worth showing, so instead lets look at Hedley.

2015 09 06 12;40 R _MG_8489
A look way, way down.

Broken into… I’m sure you get the drift.

2015 09 06 11;11 R _MG_8421 R2015 09 06 11;11 R _MG_8421 G2015 09 06 11;11 R _MG_8421 B



I really can’t think of much to say here; the same trends in the other photos continue.

2015 09 06 11;13 R _MG_8424

The UG11 filter isn’t quite as hazy when looking down in this direction. The moutnains on the horizon are American mountians, by the way; I’m fairly certian I’m looking across the border.


2015 09 06 12;46 R _MG_8512

With the short bandpass filter, the haze is starting to come back. The buildings in Hedley are bright, and stand out from the vegetation. This photo looks much better than the last short pass one.

2015 09 06 12;44 R _MG_8500

UV, on the other hand, doesn’t look much better. There is obviously a strong haze visible in the shortest wavelengths.

2015 09 06 11;09 R _MG_8419Again, though, only the shortest wavelengths. Uzing the 760 nm filter again, the sky is perfectly clear. The only real problem is that the village belnds in more with the light foliage. It isn’t hard to find, just ‘harder’ to find.

Finally(taken higher up, on the stairway to the parking lot), lets look at good old fashioned full-spectrum. No filters; this is what my camera photos would normally look like, with the maximum light entering the camera.

2015 09 06 13;24 R _MG_8587

Not bad. The infrared light has made the trees and plants lighter and more brown. In theory, UV light gets into the camera, but the camera is so insensitive to it that it doesn’t really make the photo hazier.

And that’s about it. I’ll have one more short post about the mines, but for now, I just remembered how many stairs I had to climb, and I’m tired. Time to daydream about seductive moths again.




The above photos were taken with a modified Canon Rebel T3i camera.