My first star trails

With my lens dialed all the way back to 18 mm and an exposure of almost 29 minutes, here’s my first attempt at star trails.

Here’s the full EXIF info if you’re interested, but more interesting to me was what it looked like untouched.  If you scroll down you’ll see the original image looks like broad daylight.

Clouds rolled in during the capture. With a 29 minute exposure, you never know what you’re gonna get.

What are star trails? It’s what the stars look like when you open the shutter of your camera, and leave it that way for a long time. The stars seem to rotate in the sky (it’s really we who rotate), and each star carves a small arc of white light on the picture.

In a capture of 29 minutes, we’d expect each star to travel 2% around the circle, or about 7.25 degrees. In this case, I don’t know when the clouds rolled in and cut them off from view, but probably right at the end of the exposure. The moon was about 94% full, so when it rose, it really lit things up. Thus the unedited photo looks like daylight with dim streaks.


  1. # 1 fan says:

    I don’t know if I’m more impressed by the photo, which I think is great for a first time try, or that the north star is so nicely positioned over your property. lol

  2. Jim Hardin says:

    Very Cool!
    .-= Jim Hardin´s last blog ..Hot ‘N Spicy Buffalo Posts =-.

  3. Oradan says:

    Woo. dizzy. The pictures you take are really cool.

Comment Policy: Unless you've received special dispensation (you know who you are), you must use your real name. For a little keyword SEO love, you may use name @ keyword to have a link to your site (only the keyword will be the anchor text). See the comment policy for more.

Leave a Comment


CommentLuv badge

This blog uses premium CommentLuv which allows you to put your keywords with your name. Use your real name and then @ your keywords (maximum of 3 keywords). If you're trying to promote your site, this helps you get more exposure... but it's a two way street. Please click to +1, Tweet, or Like this page, and in return, your link will register as a do-follow link with the search engines. If you don't know what all that means, please ignore this text, it doesn't apply to you!