Milky Way Over California Wine Country

Last week our family took a trip out to San Luis Obispo to visit Kristin’s extended family. We typically make it out there 1-2 times per year, but between raising kids and running businesses we hadn’t been out there together in nearly two years. It was an incredible trip and we had so much fun taking the boys hiking in Big Sur, Montana de Oro and playing on the beaches and sand dunes at Moro Bay, Avila and Cayucos. Since we were so busy doing family stuff, I really didn’t have the time to get away and shoot sunrises or sunsets. This was easy though, because after the first day a high pressure system set in an all the clouds went away for the rest of the trip!

On one of the last mornings though, I woke up at 3:00a, grabbed my gear, and snuck out to see what the Milky Way was “up” to (sorry, couldn’t help it). As expected, it was just as beautiful as ever and shining bright above the rolling hills of the wine country. A couple years ago, I took a similar shot just up the road a bit of a lone tree I had been eyeing for nearly a decade of visits to this area. I had another tree scouted out to shoot, but for some reason the Milky Way wasn’t lined up as expected so I instead opted for this group of oak trees.

Let me know what you think!

Sony a7rii and Sony 16-35
ISO 8000, f/4, 25 seconds

  • Ben Campbell

    Another awesome shot Brandon! I think the tree silhouettes of the trees make it. The colour in the Milky Way and on the horizon are really cool too.