Monument Valley and Orion - Monument Valley Tribal Park, Navajo Nation
Nikon D5, 24-70mm f/2.8, ISO 6400, f/2.8, 30sec, RRS-34L BH-40
For lots of reasons I revisit shooting locations a lot. For example, I've probably been to Monument Valley 25 times over the last 20 years. Sometimes I revisit places because I happen to be driving through on the way to other places--"...why not stop there." Other times, I have inspiration and I actually plan something to create something unique. This image is combination of both of these.
I'm still relatively new to landscape astro-photography. The cool thing about shooting at night is everything old is now new. While I might have a zillion sunrises and sunsets in Monument Valley, but how many images do I have of Orion rising over the Mittens? One, the image you're seeing here.
I stopped for a couple of days in Monument Valley during my X-mas break in 2017. The real purpose was a very unique composition in Arches National Park in Utah--that's another story. Since I was traveling through the area, I decided to spend a couple of nights here without much of a plan.
When I finally arrived, I figured out through the magic of apps on my phone, Orion would rise right over the mittens conveniently after dinner. What could be better. Not only that, the moon was well below the horizon making night photography a breeze. What could be better?
This image is a relatively simple composition of four images shot vertically across the scene. The files were merged in PTGui to make the pano with the final adjustments made in Photoshop. This is just a straight single exposure. Overall, post processing was relatively easy.