The Milky Way from Chimney Rock, Red River Gorge

The Milky Way as seen from Chimney Rock, Red River Gorge, Kentucky.

This past Thursday I met up with my buddy Josh Lowe and headed out to Chimney Rock in Kentucky’s Red River Gorge to shoot the Milky Way. Other than a few clouds along the horizon, conditions turned out pretty great!

The Shot

This shot was captured with my usual setup, a Canon 70D with my Sigma 10-20 f/3.5 @ 10mm. The sky is made up of 15 images stacked in Starry Landscape Stacker. Each sky frame is shot at ISO 10,000, f/3.5, with a 20-second exposure. This shutter speed technically introduces a slight bit of star trailing, but the sharpness is still acceptable.

The foreground is a single shot taken at ISO 800, f/4.5, with a 884-second exposure. The images were combined using layer masks in Photoshop.

I ended up doing quite a bit of processing to get the Milky Way to a point where I was happy with it. I intend to make some tutorials on this here soon, but I’m happy to try and answer any questions you might have in the meantime!