Lenticular Mountain Milky Way

Mike Berenson / Colorado Captures
Photo ID 161724576
A vision that finally came true... Milky Way clouds appear above glowing lenticular clouds and rugged peaks in this colorful night-time mountain scene. This image is the result of a lot of planning to get things just right - factoring in snowpack, moonlight, light pollution, astronomical timing, camera gear, backpacking gear, special use permits, friends who'd even consider joining me for something like this, and (mother nature's trump card) the weather. And with a little flexibility on our timing, I'm happy to say that friends and I enjoyed what we considered to be a great success. It sure helped that luck was on our side with that glowing lenticular cloud! The best part to me was a few comments I heard from one of my friends when we got to the top. He shot his first image and said 'Wow!' out loud. When he asked what that was above the cloud, I told him it was the core of the Milky Way. He was thrilled to say the least. I had to chuckle a bit as this Milky Way bonus he saw was the whole reason we started hiking at 1am! Had I really forgotten to tell him? Too funny! This composite image was taken after a night-time hike above Loveland Pass west of Denver, Colorado. It features Cupid as the closest mountain (our target), Grays and Torreys Peaks, light pollution (no, that's not sunrise light) coming all the way from Denver (50 or so miles away), and the Milky Way up top.

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