Back At The Shack For The Super Moon

Back At The Shack For The Super Moon

The Judges Shack Revisited

New Jersey excels at many things including great places to photograph a moonrise and quirky little gems of history. Those two things came together on a cold winter night along the windswept New Jersey shoreline of Island Beach State Park.  The Judge’s Shack, located in the park, is always interesting to photograph. When the January Super Moon rose just after sunset, it seemed like the place to be despite the cold. It was so cold that my fingers were barely able to operate the camera controls. Still, my friend and I were able to witness and photograph a nice evening fade into a moonlit night around around the shack.

I wrote about New Jersey’s Judge’s Shack in a previous post. Besides being a quirky piece of New Jersey history, it is a popular place for photography. Photographers use the Shack as a backdrop for star trails, the milky way and brilliant sunrises and sunsets. To me, the Judge’s Shack’s simple architecture in this austere location doesn’t need to be just a backdrop. It has a quiet charm that does very well on its own as photographic subject.

On the evening we went to photograph the Super Moon rising over the shack, the light was very pleasing. This kind of light compliments this little building. The scene provided a glimpse of quiet beachside solitude that is now too often obscured by the Jersey Shore’s hotels, expensive homes and boardwalk attractions.

The following photographs show the progression from evening to night. The time each image was made has been added to help you follow along on this little journey without having to bundle up for the cold.

5:54PM – Peaceful Evening, New Jersey by Richard Lewis 2018


6:12PM – Judges Shack In The Early Evening by Richard Lewis 2018


6:28PM – Just After Sunset by Richard Lewis 2018


When the super moon shines, it is very bright. In the image below, the moon’s brightness is partially obscured by a small cloud bank that toned it down enough so as not to overwhelm the blue hour twilight.

7:01PM – Super Moon At The Judges Shack by Richard Lewis 2018


When the moon was too high and too bright to photograph, it should have been the time to head back to a nice warm car. Instead we decided to brave the cold, windy evening a little longer and photograph the shack lit by moon glow. It was worth the extra time. The first image below may look like there is a light on in the Judge’s Shack, but it is the reflection of the full moon in the window.

7:25PM – Full Moon Reflections by Richard Lewis 2018


7:38PM – Moonlit Judges Shack by Richard Lewis 2018


For the last few years I’ve been enamored by the moon and the eerie light it casts on the world at night. This blog post shows some of my attempts to capture the special quality of moon light while following the progression of a winter evening’s descent into a Super Moon lit night.




2018-02-10T12:55:37+00:00February 10th, 2018|30 Comments


  1. Kathy Clarke February 10, 2018 at 1:54 pm - Reply

    Fabulous Rich!! Miles away looking at your NJ images warms my heart and soul.

    • Rich Lewis February 11, 2018 at 6:45 am - Reply

      Thanks Kathy. You know that the Jersey Girl can leave New Jersey but it never leaves her. I’m happy to help warm your heart and soul my friend.

  2. Lynne Zimmerman Mills February 10, 2018 at 2:00 pm - Reply

    It makes me miss the north but not the forlorn looking beaches.

    • Rich Lewis February 11, 2018 at 6:45 am - Reply

      Thanks for your comment Lynne

  3. Karen Johnson February 10, 2018 at 3:42 pm - Reply

    So beautiful Rich!

    • Rich Lewis February 11, 2018 at 6:46 am - Reply

      Thanks Karen.

  4. eajackson February 10, 2018 at 5:35 pm - Reply

    All of these are just lovely. Just after sunset could be snow or sand. I think that’s my favorite of this bunch.

    • Rich Lewis February 11, 2018 at 6:51 am - Reply

      Thanks Buck. I thought the same thing about the sand. There was something about the quality and direction of the light at that time. It was very unusual and only lasted a short time.

  5. Doreen February 10, 2018 at 5:36 pm - Reply


    • Rich Lewis February 11, 2018 at 6:51 am - Reply

      Thanks Doreen

  6. Bob Hare February 10, 2018 at 7:44 pm - Reply

    Thank you for documenting that beautiful scene under the varying lighting conditions Rich. It was both beautiful and instructive.

    • Rich Lewis February 11, 2018 at 6:53 am - Reply

      Thanks Bob. I really appreciate your comment. I’m happy you enjoyed this post and got something good out of it.

  7. Barry Nealis February 10, 2018 at 11:34 pm - Reply

    Very nice! Sure looks like it must have been pretty cold out there 😉

    • Rich Lewis February 11, 2018 at 6:55 am - Reply

      You have no idea how cold it was. Wait, actually you do! Thanks for freezing out there with me.

  8. Mike Pillows February 11, 2018 at 12:02 am - Reply

    Your perseverance and creativity shines in this post. For me I have a very hard time re-visiting a place. You just seem to find subtle nuances that make one want to be their with you. Love the lighting and the mood of these and keep sharing!!!

    • Rich Lewis February 11, 2018 at 6:58 am - Reply

      Thanks Mike. Some places, like this one, keep calling me back. It’s like I’m not done with them yet. I’d love to have you join me the next time.

  9. Terry schmidt February 11, 2018 at 7:48 am - Reply

    The Shack is a special place and I’m amazed it withstands mother nature’s events. What a gift to its existence that you have captured it so beautifully. I’ve enjoyed your images and sense of magic.

    • Rich Lewis February 11, 2018 at 10:06 am - Reply

      Thanks for your beautiful compliment. I am also amazed at, and very happy about, this iconic little shack’s durability.

  10. Sharman Ebbeson February 11, 2018 at 8:30 am - Reply

    Very interesting sequence ! Beautiful; especially the glow of the moon reflecting on the window of the shack!

    • Rich Lewis February 11, 2018 at 10:01 am - Reply

      Thanks Sharman. That moon reflection was something very special.

  11. Rajiv February 11, 2018 at 8:59 am - Reply

    Wow. Beautful stuff.

    • Rich Lewis February 11, 2018 at 10:00 am - Reply

      Thanks Rajiv. i appreciate your compliment.

  12. Ralph Berglund February 11, 2018 at 11:52 am - Reply

    First class, Rich, but I most like 5:54 and 7:25, neither of which has the strong moon presence. Go figure.

    • Rich Lewis February 11, 2018 at 1:14 pm - Reply

      Thanks Ralph. It’s funny that you liked the photograph made at 5:54. That one to me is the Jersey Shore at its best. I don’t think I would have seen that if it wasn’t for the inspiration I’ve gotten from your photography and stories from the shore. So, double thank you.

  13. Pat Worley' February 12, 2018 at 9:34 am - Reply

    Very nice story and the progression of light.

    • Rich Lewis February 15, 2018 at 12:38 pm - Reply

      Thanks Pat. I’ve been finding these kinds of progressions, day to night and night to day, to be very fascinating lately.

  14. Jon Forman February 12, 2018 at 10:35 am - Reply

    More fantastic photos. Thanks for sharing jon

    • Rich Lewis February 15, 2018 at 12:38 pm - Reply

      Thanks Jon, I appreciate it.

  15. denisebushphoto February 18, 2018 at 1:32 pm - Reply

    That’s a great place for the moon Rich … good thinking! ‘Full Moon Reflections’ appeals to me the most. I love how subtle but visible all the details are. I like how you arranged them to illustrate the progression!

    • Rich Lewis February 19, 2018 at 10:57 am - Reply

      Thanks Denise. I’m kind of partial to that photograph myself as it was a nice surprise to see the moonlight so boldly reflected in the window. It was a fun, and pretty freezing cold progression.

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