Milky Way Panorama on the Maine Coast

Nikon Z 6 with FTZ lens adapter and 14-24mm f/2.8 lens.

Panorama images like this are possible when the Milky Way is lower in the sky, making it possible to shoot single row panorama that captures the entire arc of the Milky Way.

This panorama is actually created from 2 separate panoramas — one panorama exposed for the sky and another with longer shutter speeds for the foreground. I used the Nodal Ninja RD16-II rotator to make this easy in the dark, you can set click-stop settings on the rotator, so I set it to 30 degrees and then I could just pan the head and stop at the next click stop without having to turn on my headlamp and find the next 30 degree increment manually. This makes shooting panoramas much faster. I also used my nodal slide to correct for parallax, which makes stitching the panoramas much easier. You can buy nodal slides from many manufacturers including Nodal Ninja, Really Right Stuff, Acratech, etc.

Nikon Z 6 with FTZ lens adapter and NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8 lens @ 14mm, f/2.8 for all shots. Sky: 8 shots at 20 seconds, ISO 6400. Foreground: 8 shots at 2 minutes, ISO 6400. The sky and foreground panos were stitched separately in Photoshop and then blended into one single panorama to have short trails with the stars and more detail in the foreground.

This entry was posted in astrophotography, landscape astrophotography, Landscape Photography, Milky Way, Nikon, Nikon Z 6.


  1. Craig Cohen January 3, 2020 at 3:45 pm #

    What time of year was this taken and what time of day?

    • Adam Woodworth January 4, 2020 at 12:58 pm #

      Early May, I think it was before midnight. Do you have an app like PhotoPills? It will tell you when you can shoot single-row panoramas like this because you’ll be able to tell how high in the sky the Milky Way will be.

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