Daybreak can be one of the most beautiful times of the day. The sun will either be rising over a land mass or rising over a body of water depending on where you are in the world. When the sun is close to the horizon, its light appears warmer and softer, creating the Golden Hour. This can be a great time to fly a drone and collect incredible aerial views of your current location.
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Flying a drone in the morning Golden Hour can be fun and also a little difficult. Be aware of where the sun is in the sky. The lower the sun is to the horizon, or closer to sunrise it is, you may need to open the aperture of your camera a bit. Then as the morning goes on there will be more light as the sun will be higher in the sky. At this time you can have your aperture less open since you don’t need a whole bunch of light coming through your lense.
Golden Hour Defined
Golden Hour refers to a state of natural lighting that is most common around sunrise and sunset. When the Sun is just above the horizon, its rays impact the Earth at a low angle and they have to travel through more of the Earth’s atmosphere before they reach us. On their way to the Earth’s surface, they encounter atmospheric particles such as dust and water droplets. These particles filter the sunlight, ultimately making it less bright.
Why is it Golden?
As light makes its way to Earth, it travels through a thick layer of atmosphere. While traveling through this layer, it scatters itself through the blue and violet wavelengths. This allows for more of the light in the orange and red spectrum to reach Earth. This scattering decreases the sunlight’s color temperature and makes it take on a golden or reddish hue.
How long does Golden Hour last?
Golden Hour has different lengths of time for different hemispheres in the world. Latitude and longitude play big roles in the duration of Golden Hour. For example, if you are very close to the equator, it takes the Sun only about 50 minutes to move from 6 degrees below the horizon to 6 degrees above it. this is a relatively short golden hour. And at higher latitudes, the same process takes longer. At around 60° North and South of the equator, the golden hour can last over 90 minutes.
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