Milky Way over Butte

Utah's San Rafael Swell offers spectacular views of the milky way. This image shows the galactic center.

Utah's San Rafael Swell offers spectacular views of the milky way. This image shows the galactic center.
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Runner Up in Star Love Photo Contest
Peer Award
Absolute Masterpiece
kapstok ANGELA-BR leonhugo
Magnificent Capture
adearest andrewpowell_0479 Jeremydean80
All Star
KayBrewer cdhollingsworth
Superior Skill
Outstanding Creativity
Top Choice


Jeremydean80 adearest KenRS OBRonTyan

Top ClassTM

Star Love Photo ContestTop 10 class
Star Love Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
The Vast Milky Way Photo ContestTop 20 class
A Milky Way Photo ContestTop 30 class


1 Comment | Report
Jeremydean80 PRO+
Jeremydean80 Oct 13
Beautiful shot and congratulations on being runner-up in the star photo contest!

Behind The Lens

I captured this photo in Utah's San Rafael Swell shortly after a waxing moon had sat in the west.
I believe it was around 10:00 PM.
Tough the moon wasn't yet at a quarter, I waited about thirty minutes for it to set; therefore, having the advantage of a darker sky to accent the Milky Way and Jupiter. The lower foreground light, which was our campsite, adds depth to the photo.
I used a Nikon d7200 and a Rokinon 10mm lens mounted securely on a tripod.
Everyone is thrilled when observing the night sky, especially, when the Milky Way is observable from one horizon to the next. I wanted to catch our galaxy directly over Window Blind Butte which is a massive monolith and an icon in this area. Jupiter, the bright object to the left of the Milky Way, was an added bonus.
In post processing, using my Adobe CS4, I reduced the noise created from using a high ISO and darkened the sky for better contrast.
In my camera bag
I use three different Canon cameras with an assortment of lenses as well as two Nikon cameras with several lenses. I always have a tripod at hand for use when using hdr, stacking images, and long exposures.
This area is fabulous for night photography because there is no light pollution. I shoot the Milky Way during the summer and into late October usually when the moon is beginning to wax. A little moon light can add detail to the foreground while bathing the towering cliffs in a mellow light. Moreover, the San Rafael River is located in this region and it too can be used to create beautiful night landscapes, and if windless ,stars reflect off the water's surface.

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