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Milky Way Mountains



The milky way shoots up over the mountains at Lake Dillon in Colorado.

The milky way shoots up over the mountains at Lake Dillon in Colorado.
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Legendary Award
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Contest Finalist in Long Exposure Views Photo Contest
Contest Finalist in Water World Photo Contest Outside Views
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Contest Finalist in Image of the Year Photo Contest by Snapfish
Contest Finalist in Monthly Pro Vol 17 Photo Contest
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Water Photo Contest 2017Top 10 rank
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21 Comments | Report
darrellgillenwater Platinum
 
darrellgillenwater December 21, 2015
Beautiful shot
ReidCollins PRO+
ReidCollins December 22, 2015
Thanks!
gcampbell6652 Ultimate
 
gcampbell6652 December 24, 2015
Very nice.
franciscogranadeiro Platinum
 
franciscogranadeiro December 29, 2015
Fabulous, what incredible colours and great composition
christinespencer
 
christinespencer January 02, 2016
Love it !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
AliAlzuhair
 
AliAlzuhair January 22, 2016
Impressive!
cdramirez
 
cdramirez February 03, 2016
Wow, impressive capture, great composition and fine processing.
elizabethcat
 
elizabethcat February 06, 2016
i love this photo, i never get to see sky like this
iandsmith
 
iandsmith March 31, 2016
Very impressive.
Nitka
 
Nitka April 10, 2016
Breathtaking!....:-)
vivid_exposure99
 
vivid_exposure99 October 20, 2016
Such a magnificent photograph!!
ElenaMR
 
ElenaMR November 19, 2016
Amazing!!
dominiquebiancadavis
 
dominiquebiancadavis February 23, 2017
These colours are truly captivating
httppluto
 
httppluto April 13, 2017
absolute masterpiece
stephxanie
 
stephxanie July 26, 2017
Outstanding
Nicci007
 
Nicci007 September 01, 2017
WOW!!
Shamrocks71 PRO
 
Shamrocks71 October 20, 2017
Beyond beautiful!
gregnunn
 
gregnunn June 15, 2018
Beautiful absolutely beautiful
adamdickinson_4696
 
adamdickinson_4696 July 13, 2018
Wow, what a great picture
DNproSTUDIO
 
DNproSTUDIO October 06, 2018
wonderful photography
Oceanbluephotography
 
Oceanbluephotography November 23, 2018
I love it!!!!!!!!
RoxannKay
 
RoxannKay March 17, 2020
Dang! That’s amazing! I wish I could do this good!

Behind The Lens

Location
This photo was taken at Lake Dillon in Dillon, Colorado. It was a beautiful clear night and my first milky way photo in Colorado.
Time
This is my favorite milky way photo I've taken. My mom and sisters went to the this lake around 9pm and they sat by lake while I took this photo. It was a perfectly clear night, no clouds in the sky, and the milky way lined up perfectly in between the mountains. The green glow reflected on the lake, which is something I've never seen before.
Lighting
The color of the photo is something I really worked with the day after I took this photo. I love the way the purple sky stands out against the mountains. There was no haze or anything in the sky, so the mountains stood out perfectly. It is a single long exposure photo. The city lights below the mountains reflected on the lake, helping the tree line to stand out more. Without that light from the city, the mountains wouldn't have stood out nearly as well.
Equipment
I used my Canon 5D Mark III, with a Canon 24mm 1.4 lens. I had the camera on my tripod.
Inspiration
Ever since my mom moved to Colorado, I've always wanted a milky way photo by this lake, overlooking the mountains. It worked out for me to visit right when there was a new moon, allowing the milky way to stand out. Driving by this location during the day and seeing the rocks in the lake, I always imagined a beautiful night photo. I asked my sisters and mom to come with when I took this, and to my surprise the milky way was in the perfect spot of where I wanted to take the photo. Usually the milky way is not exactly right where I want it when I go out to take photos, but this night it was in the best possible spot. I placed my tripod as low as it could go, and stood it in the water to get the line of rocks leading to the mountains. I photographed a few different versions of this image and decided on this one because of the leading line of the rocks and the composition.
Editing
For this image I edited it in Adobe Photoshop. I adjusted the colors of the sky to make it much more colorful. I added purple and green, because I thought it was a nice contrast of colors against the natural looking mountains. I brightened the sky to make the milky way stand out, and added contrast to the rocks and trees.
In my camera bag
In my camera bag I always have my Canon 5D Mark III and my Canon 24-105 attached to it during day photography. The other lenses I carry with me are the 24mm 1.4 (which I used to take this photo) the Canon 85mm 1.8 and Canon 70-200mm. I also always have a polarizer filter on my Canon 24-105 for day photography. I have a basic ND filter for day long exposure photos, a lens cloth, and extra lens caps in case I lose any out on a shoot.
Feedback
My advice for capturing a photo like this is to explore the environment around you during the night. Drive around at night for a while and see what location would be best for a photo like this. Before you go out, make sure it is a clear night with no clouds in the sky. It is always disappointing to go out to shoot and get all set up and realize there are clouds covering the entire sky. Be patient taking the photo. Don't rush a photo like this and take it from multiple angles, never just snap one image and leave. Have some options to look through when you get home. And if you get out and the milky way isn't lined up perfectly, try and go to a different location to work around the sky. Don't give up just because the sky isn't exactly how you'd like it. I hope this helps!

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