Unidentified flying objects in night sky? What were these?

Click for full-sized image.

April 26th, 2020, 9:10 p.m. local time

Tonight I saw something truly bizarre.  On this clear Spring night, I took my camera out to take pictures of the Moon and Venus together, around 9 p.m. local time.  I started with a wide lens to get both objects together, then quickly switched to my long 300mm lens for a closeup of the Moon in its early Crescent phase.

I had planned to take a number of image sets while refining the focus.  In the middle of this exercise, above the Moon and Venus, and still higher than Castor and Pollux of Gemini above them, I saw appear a trail of light points moving from W-NW to SW, right to left from my vantage and on a gradual incline towards the South.  They were in perfect unison motion and if I had to guess, there were about 30 of them.  They were in no uniform pattern, with some bunched and others alone.  They moved at about the speed of a typical visible satellite, stretching and moving from above Gemini and then disappearing somewhere past Regulus.

I knew I had to act quickly to photograph them, as they were moving fast and I didn’t know how long they would be visible or if more were coming.  Unfortunately, I had my long lens on the camera, so the field of view was far too narrow to appreciate the size and spectacle of this train of moving light points.

If I had had my wider lens on from just a few minutes prior, I know I would have easily gotten a much better perspective shot.  Instead, my best snap of about five is show here, with the light points artificially enhanced so you can see the line.  It’s important to note that this grouping is just a small fraction of the entire visible line I saw high above.

I have no idea what these were.  My first thought was drones, but they were obviously far too high and their motion was akin to any random satellite, except of course that there were dozens of them, moving in a line.  My only other idea was some sort of debris just above the atmosphere that was in perfect position to reflect the light of the Sun (which had set over an hour prior).

The only event I can remotely compare this to was when I saw the ISS and a Space Shuttle, some 15-20 years ago, fly over in perfect unison.  But they were only two points of light, and if I remember, they were more side-by-side, whereas these lights tonight were in a straight line.

Do you have any idea what these light points could have been?  Have you ever seen anything similar?

Edit: It appears I saw the SpaceX satellites.  See this post and its accompanying video:

How To See A ‘Starlink Train’ From Your Home This Week As SpaceX Satellites Swarm The Night Sky

The Friday the Thirteenth Harvest Moon in this Month of Sepetember in the Year 2019

 

ISO 300, 1/500 exp, f/9, 300mm lens

They call it Harvest
Unlucky superstition
Same Moon as always

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Moon on August 5th, 2019

Through warm Summer haze
Trees keep vigil in moonlight
Even though we don’t

Forgotten Mars


Little red light always in the night sky
Shines at opposition, despite your size
Rivaling Venus, Moon when you trek by
Lest we forget as you fade before rise

Passed so close to Earth in twenty-eighteen
I watched you for months, awaiting to see
What would reveal upon your radiant sheen
Snapped many pictures of you in my glee

Yet as the months went by your brightness passed
Glowing dimmer into the sea of stars
And lo, ashamed my interest waned fast
Forgot my pictures of you, jewel Mars

Today, I make amends and recollect
Enjoy these views, delayed by my neglect

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When there is nothing but gray, day and night
As layers of dark clouds canvas the sky
I recall how I would ponder and write
About what’s seen from the telescope’s eye

For with a clear sky you can catch the Moon
Or observe planets, like Venus and Mars
And with telescope, find distant Neptune
Among the constellations drawn from stars

But rude Winter cloaks all that shines above
First by snow, then sleet, then widening frost
Denying this stranded stargazer’s love
To remain indoors dreaming of nights lost

Yet Winter will not always reign as king
I shall see Orion at start of Spring

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My train rushes by
Streetlights below glare upward
It’s light pollution

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They always look down
Too engrossed in their small worlds
They never look up

A Despondent Stargazer’s Haiku

dark-clouds-02

Chill winds lure gray clouds
Sad rain kindles my despair
No stars shine tonight