Photographing the Milky Way in Big Bend National Park, Texas

The Milky Way core season is once again upon us. This is the time of the year, from March through September, when the core of the Milky Way is visible at night. With clear skies and a waxing moon that was setting before the Milky Way started to become visible at around 04:00, I headed out to Big Bend National Park in West Texas for the weekend. Big Bend National Park is located in a remote part of West Texas, far away from any major cities. The sky above Big Bend has almost no light pollution, and measures in at class 1 on the Bortle scale. This makes it an excellent place for photographing the Milky Way.

These photos were shot at around 06:00 in the morning, about 30 minutes before astronomical twilight. They were shot on a Nikon Z6 ii with a Nikon Z 20mm f/1.8 at f/2.8 for 9 x 15 seconds, ISO 6400. The foreground was light painted using two Lume Cube Panel Mini’s. The images were then stacked in Sequator and edited in Adobe Lightroom.

Sotol Vista Overlook, Big Bend National Park, Texas
Dugout Wells, Big Bend National Park, Texas

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