Launch of a Delta II rocket from Vandenberg AFB, with Italy's COSMO-3 radar imaging satellite. Distance is about 140 miles.
Lights in the lower right corner are Jet Propulsion Laboratory, city lights in the center are La Crescenta.
Taken from the side of Echo Mountain in Altadena, CA on 10/24/2008
Canon XSi with 24-105L IS lens @ 105mm
30 sec exposure, ISO 200, f/5.6
The squiggles at the beginning and end are because I did not use mirror lockup. I had pre-set the camera with mirror lockup and remote release, but somehow managed to undo the settings while I waited impatiently for launch. Sigh...