Having made one previous attempt to shoot a time lapse video of the milky way over the mountains of Crete, which I wasn't happy with due to technical quality reasons, I was determined to try again before this once in a lifetime opportunity passed by.
What's so special about filming the milky way in Crete you might ask? Why not just wait till you get back home to the dark skies of North Wales?
Well Crete, in the Aegean Sea, is the most southerly location in Europe at a latitude of 35°N, and as such is a great place to be able to see the colourful galactic centre of the milky way all year round, as opposed to North Wales at a latitude of 53°N, where the galactic centre only just makes it above the southern horizon at midsummer.
Hence this second attempt, having learnt what to avoid from the first, less than perfect, shoot.
On this occasion I was much more careful in the location I chose for taking the hundreds of stills required, which wasn't far removed from my previous spot but avoided the chance of any stray headlight beams hitting the front lens element on my camera.
I started the filming under clear skies, with the milky way glowing in an arc overhead and with the peaks of the Orosira Dikti mountains in the background, but it wasn't long before clouds started streaking over the mountain tops, sometimes obscuring and then revealing the stars.
But I wasn't giving up, having learnt from previous shoots that a few clouds blowing over can actually add interest to the final video.
So I kept on filming for just over two hours, as the galactic centre tracked across the sky to the western horizon,, before finally packing everything away for the drive back down to our resort near Hersonissos on the north coast of the island.
I don't know if I'll ever come back to Crete, so I'm certainly glad I made this second effort at capturing this amazing sight.
Filename - crete milky way timelapse 02.mp4
Camera - Canon EOS 6D
Lens - 24-105mm zoom @ 24mm
Exposure (start of sequence) - 15 sec @ f4, ISO128000
Exposure (end of sequence) - 15 sec @ f4, ISO12800
Filters - None.
Shooting interval - 15 seconds
Location - Near Kera, Crete
This clip - HD 720p, 30fps
Clip duration - 18 seconds
All content copyright © Howard Litherland 2009-2017 unless otherwise stated.