What does it take to get the shot?
Well, that depends on a lot really, doesn't it? Sometimes you just have to pull over on the side of the road, or lift your camera. Other times it takes a bit more work and planning.
For this particular shot it took some work. Ever since I first saw a picture of this hut, I knew I wanted a picture of it, with stars behind.
This is Kitchen Hut, atop Cradle Mountain, that iconic mountain in the middle of Tasmania. To get here took me a few hours drive, and I arrived at the car park just on sunset. From there it's about a 2 hour walk to the location of this hut. And it was rather cold too, well, below 0 C anyway. So there I was, with my tent in backpack, two cameras and tripods, hiking up a mountain in the dark. The moon was at 90% which helped my site, but not the starry night, so I had to wait until after 3am for the moon to set and the stars to come out and play. The idea was to get up there, and get a shot of the Aurora from the top, but unfortunately there was just too much fog and low cloud around during the time of the Aurora. I had to settle for a moonlight landscape, and later this starry scene
This picture was taken with my Nikon D800 and iced up Nikon 14-24mm, @ f/2.8, with ISO 3200 and a 25sec exposure. It is actually a panorama of 6 images, shot in horizontal, from bottom to top. The bands of colour you see in the sky is Airglow, and if you are wondering what the two white marks are on the left of screen, those are the small and large Megellannic clouds, only visible in the Southern Hemisphere. Oh, and there was quite a few meteoroids around too.
I encourage you to view this full screen, and if you would like, you can actually purchase this print which is now on my website here. http://goo.gl/5HrX0Z
I hope you enjoy this picture as much as I did taking it.