Aeromoe's Version of Joe Orman's Naked-Eye 100 List

Number 97: Rocket Trails

This chance photo was taken July 12, 2006 in the Phoenix area at a camera time of 4:36am.
In June 2011 I finally pinned down the source of the trails. It is a Hera rocket launched from Fort Wingate, New Mexico in support of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system.
According to Jonathan's Space Report, it launched at 1117hrs UTC (0417hrs my local time).

The view is due east and ccording to the EXIF data from the digital image, it was a 1.5 second exposure at f4.5. The ISO is 800 and the focal length is 54mm.

Below are three time exposures showing the exhaust trail of a Minotaur launch from Vandenberg AFB, California on the evening of September 25, 2010.
I positioned myself north of the White Tank Mountains to have a clear view of the western horizon in the hopes I'd at least be able to see the exhaust.
The rocket launched pretty much right at the beginning of the launch window of 9:41pm MST.
I was able to see at least one of the staging events as evidenced in the first and second photos.
Keep in mind I was over 400 miles away from the launch site (VAFB SLC-8) when I took these photos.