Borman was experiencing an extraordinary feeling of loneliness when he took this photograph of the never before seen by humans lunar farside terminator:

He was orbiting the backside of the Moon on board the Apollo 8 Command Module at the furthest distance ever traveled from Earth, without communication with Mission Control, and both his crewmates were sleeping as they were in their scheduled sleep period on orbit 8.


LIFE, 17 January 1969, pg. 26


This fantastic vertical view (from color magazine 14/D) shows the floor of the 437-km walled plain Crater Korolev (named America by the astronauts) through the 250mm telephoto lens as the Sun was setting over the lunar farside.

The deep shadows near the terminator [boundary between day and night on the Moon] emphasize the relief which appears forbidding because of the accentuation of detail at the low Sun elevation. (from NASA SP-246, pg. 20)

The area covered by the photograph is approximately 20 miles on each side. Latitude / longitude: 3°S 156.5°W.

“A science fiction world – awesome, forlorn beauty.”

—Frank Borman (LIFE, 17 January 1969)

From the mission transcript near the end of orbit 7 (Borman captured the photograph minutes later):

083:03:35 Borman:

Don’t worry about the exposure business [of the Hasselblad camera], Goddamn it, Anders; get to bed! Right now! Come on!

083:05:05 Borman:

I don’t want [garble] All right. You want me to take some pictures? Get some sleep now. You’ve only got a couple hours, Bill, before we’re going to have to be fresh again.

083:05:20 Borman:

Yes. Okay. I’ll take care of it all. All right. I just got up, remember? I slept for 4 hours.