The Story Behind: "Barn Under Milky Way"

"Take out the trash."

That's all the excitement I had scheduled on the calendar for the evening of June 22, 2015. But instead of wheeling refuse down the driveway this warm summer evening, I instead find myself quickly packing camera bags, starting a pot of coffee and loading all kinds of gear into my vehicle. Why? I had seen a few mentions about the possibility of some strong northern lights that night stream by on the Internet earlier that day. I wasn't planning on heading out to try to photograph the lights. Most of the time the hype of a good aurora show fizzles into the darkness or we are "blessed" with yet another cloudy Minnesota night sky. This night was headed in that direction...until I got this post from a friend on Facebook:

Man, geomagnetic storm! You going to try to capture it? Seems like it will be too early/bright to catch it here.
— Chris Sanny

The next thing you know, I'm grabbing everything on my mental "going out to photograph night sky stuff in the dark...all night...alone" checklist that I keep in my head. Tripods. Flashlights. Snacks. Three foot metal pipe. What? (We'll get to that later.) You see, sometimes, all it takes is that one little message from a friend to inspire you to get off your comfy couch on a Monday night to go out and create some great photos of the night sky. And just ignore them and go to sleep super early. But on THIS night, THIS NIGHT, I ventured my driveway, for starters anyways.

As someone who would occasionally go out for hours and hours in search of northern lights and get skunked, I came up with a quick way to see if there was any activity