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Milky Way over the Spanish Peaks
That's not lightning, and it did not strike between those mountains. The diagonal band is actually the central band of our Milky Way Galaxy, while the twin peaks are actually called the Spanish Peaks -- but located in Colorado, USA. Although each Spanish peak is composed of a slightly different type of rock, both are approximately 25 million years old. This serene yet spirited image composite was meticulously created by merging a series of images all taken from the same location on one night. At the start of the evening, the natural moonlight was used to illuminate the snow-capped mountains. Once the moon was set, a second series of exposures were taken to build up the background sky, with great detail being revealed in the Milky Way dust lanes as well as the large colorful region surrounding the star Rho Ophiuchus just right of center. Other frames were added to the composite to include the two horses who roamed into the scene and another where I deliberately turned on my parking lights to illuminate the dusty road. Finally, one sky image was taken using a fogging filter so that brighter stars, especially those marking the Teapot, would appear more spread out and so more prominent
Camera: Canon 5D MKIII with Full Spectrum Modification
Lens: Canon 20-70mm at 28mm, f2.8
Mount: Vixen Polarie, Tripod Mounted
Exposures: Foreground (Mountains): 60 seconds, ISO 800, Milky Way: Multiple 30 second exposures, ISO 1600.