Bar Harbor fireworks

An opportunity for a new type of photography.

I chose to spend the week of July 4th in Acadia National Park in part because I thought it would be fun to be in Bar Harbor for Independence Day.  Indeed, they hosted a fantastic fireworks display, down at the harbor.  The weather was absolutely perfect – clear skies, light breeze, warm temps.

I started the evening on the rooftop deck of the Bar Harbor Beerworks, which has an extensive collection of local brews along with decent pub-style food.  As the evening progressed, they started charging $$extra to remain on deck –presumably because it had a great view of the sky over the harbor, and there is surely some appeal to watching the display from a beer deck.  Instead, I checked out and headed down to the waterfront.  Although I arrived an hour early, the crowds had already staking out the best spaces on the grassy harborside park.  I squeezed into a nice patch of grass between two families and close to the harbor’s edge. Eventually there were many hundreds of happy people here.

I set up my tripod but then realized I’d forgotten the tripod plate — required to attach the camera to the tripod!  So I nested the camera in the soft camera bag, pointing roughly in the right direction, and waited.

The fireworks were spectacular, and lasted what seemed like a half hour.  Sitting this close, I could feel the concussive boom of each burst.

Fireworks in Bar Harbor (Acadia) on July 4th

I took nearly 300 shots, and whittled them down to five for the gallery.  Not too shabby for a first try!

Canon R5, ISO 200, f/10, 2-2.5s exposure. Shutter triggered remotely via Bluetooth from Canon’s iPhone app.  Post-processed with Lightroom, mostly Auto settings.

Author: dfkotz

David Kotz is an outdoor enthusiast, traveller, husband, and father of three. He is also a Professor of Computer Science at Dartmouth College.

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