Another successful Sunrise Lighthouse photography cruise is in the books and again this year the weather did not did not disappoint with some very colorful early morning sunlight casting some truly beautiful light on the area lighthouses. Wildfires out west have put lot of smoke in the upper atmosphere that has blown Eastward and has caused the recent more orange sun and moon rises and sets in Maine. Almost two dozen people came aboard the 6 a.m. cruise aboard the Balmy Days that left Pier 8 before the local sunrise. While lots of people were sporting cameras and cell phone cameras not everyone aboard was a photographer - one person was there to simply see some lights that he had not yet seen in order to fulfill his wish to see all of the lights in Maine from the water. But for those wanting to take pictures most everyone got better than postcard quality results from the cruise. Among the lighthouses we saw were Burnt Island, Ram Island, the Cuckolds and Hendricks Headlight. Hendricks Head actually has more of a westerly exposure and because we saw that one last the sun was high enough to cast some nice light that accentuated shadows making for a more vivid and nice contrasty view that you would not normally see from land.
After looping around Southport Island and passing thought the swing bridge we paused to see a private lighthouse on the West side of the harbor that was a bonus as we headed back to the dock.
A handful of people also bought tickets to continue out to Monhegan Island to visit and tour the lighthouse out there as it was Maine Open Lighthouse day and it was only recently announced that the light would be open for tours. A free reservation ticket was required and issued at the lighthouse. Tours were scheduled every 20 minutes with a maximum of 10 people per tour. We learned how Monhegan light is the second tallest lighthouse with Seguin Island being just two feet taller making it the tallest light on the East coast. People on the tour got to go up the spiral staircase to the lantern house for about 10 minutes. It was sweltering hot there but the impressive views outweighed the discomfort of the heat. Most everyone was taking pictures from the unique vantage point - myself included. The island taxi service that consisted of a golf cart with extra seats came in very handy to get around the island with the camera gear we had in tow and I highly recommend that especially for anyone who has gear to carry and for people with mobility issues.
Already there has been a mention of doing the Sunrise Photography cruise again next year so if you missed this one mark your calendar for the second Saturday in 2023 which conveniently coincides with Maine Open Lighthouse Day.