Sunday, October 31, 2021

Lick Observatory - Mt. Hamilton, CA (Cellphone Photos)

On 16 October 2021, I went up to Lick Observatory on Mt. Hamilton near San Jose, CA with my mom. I've been wanting to go check out the main areas and inside the buildings for a while now, but Lick Observatory was closed due to the pandemic. This was why on the last 2 trips, you only saw me take photos on State Route 130 (you can find those photos here and here). Recently they have partially reopened so I was able to go and check out some of the things I really wanted to see. Here are the cellphone photos I took while there. I also had some fun and had my mom helped me take some photos of me on this trip too.

Message from the photographer: Sorry it took me so long to post these photos. I've actually started feeling ill half way through the trip to Lick Observatory, and I've been a little sick for a while since then. I think I probably caught a cold. This is why I haven't gotten to posting the photos until now. 

Update on my vision: I also have some good news to share with everyone. This is just going to be a quick update on my vision. I'll give more details soon but here it is. I've recently been on an experimental treatment for visual snow syndrome that seems promising (unfortunately there are no established treatments for visual snow syndrome). I am still night blind and need a white cane to get around at night (and no matter how bright of a flashlight, it just can't override the vision loss unfortunately), but my day time vision has improved quite a bit. That is not to say it recovered to the point that I can drive a car, and no it is not back to normal, but it has been better overall and less disabling compared to the past (at least during day time). I am quite happy about this actually because by the end of 2019, I've had to start using a white cane, and it's been highly disabling until I started the experimental treatment recently. I don't expect a complete recovery, but I'll take what I can get at this point. I'm guessing the night blindness and the blindness in poorly lit environments are here to stay for a long time, but being able to recover some of my day time vision (and being less dependant on my mom and my white cane) is better than nothing (which is why I'm offering myself up as a test subject), so I'm happy. 😄 

A photo inside the visitor center at Lick Observatory.

Scenery photos from the main parking lot of Lick Observatory. In the photos you can see the winding mountain road which is State Route 130, the road you take to get to Lick Observatory from San Jose, CA.

Scenery photo near the visitor center of Lick Observatory. In the center of the photo are the Shane 3-meter Reflector Telescope and the Automated Planet Finder. Also in the photo is State Route 130.

Scenery photo from the main parking lot of Lick Observatory. In the photo you can see the winding mountain road which is State Route 130, the road you take to get to Lick Observatory from San Jose, CA.

Panorama from the main parking lot of Lick Observatory. In the photo you can see the winding mountain road which is State Route 130, the road you take to get to Lick Observatory from San Jose, CA.


Scenery photo from the main parking lot of Lick Observatory. In the photo you can see the winding mountain road which is State Route 130, the road you take to get to Lick Observatory from San Jose, CA.

Scenery photo from the main parking lot of Lick Observatory.

Scenery photo from the main parking lot of Lick Observatory. In the photo are the visitor center and the 36-inch Crossley Reflector Telescope.

Scenery photo from the main parking lot of Lick Observatory. In the photo are the visitor center and the North Dome Observatory.

A photo of the 36-inch Crossley Reflector Telescope taken near the visitor center.

A photo taken on my walk between from visitor center to the Shane 3-meter Reflector Telescope. In the photo in the center are the Shane 3-meter Reflector Telescope and the Automated Planet Finder.


A photo of the Automated Planet Finder.

A photo of the 36-inch Crossley Reflector Telescope (slightly left from center). North Dome Observatory (slightly right from center). Photo taken on my walk between from visitor center to the Shane 3-meter Reflector Telescope.

A photo of the Shane 3-meter Reflector Telescope.

Photos from the inside of the Shane 3-meter Reflector Telescope.

Being night blind, the inside of the telescope was the most boring part of the trip. It was so dark inside the Shane 3-meter Reflector Telescope, I was barely able to see anything. In fact, my cellphone camera was able to see more than I did. I ended up not really being sure what was inside the telescope until I copied the photos from my cellphone into my computer. Once I viewed the photos on the big screen, I was amazed at what my cellphone camera can see, and what I can't see. Your question is probably, "How did you take these photos?" Technically, I took these photos, but my mom helped position my hand so I can take these photos. So technically she did most of the hard work in taking these photos, I just clicked the shutter button a couple times. 😅 The joys of dealing with vision impairment...


A photo of the Automated Planet Finder.

A scenery photo with the Shane 3-meter Reflector Telescope on the left.

My mom helped take a photo of me while we were at Lick Observatory. Behind me on the right is the Shane 3-meter Reflector Telescope.

My mom helped take a photo of me while we were at Lick Observatory. Behind me on the right is the Automated Planet Finder, and in the distance in the center is the 36-inch Crossley Reflector Telescope.

Scenery photo taken near the visitor center of Lick Observatory. In the center of the photo are the Shane 3-meter Reflector Telescope and the Automated Planet Finder. Also in the photo is State Route 130.

Panorama shot near the visitor center. On the right is the 36-inch Crossley Reflector Telescope. On the left is State Route 130, the Shane 3-meter Reflector Telescope, and the Automated Planet Finder.

This is all the photos for today. I hope you have enjoyed the photos! Please don't forget to share the blog post with your friends and family members! Also, if you want to get notifications when I post up more photos, "Like" us on Facebook or follow me on Twitter and Instagram. These links can also be found on the top of the right sidebar.