Raphoe, County Donegal, Ireland
I remember arriving to this ancient standing stone circle in an attempt to capture our Milky way galaxy rising over it. There was a crystal-clear sky & the Milky Way was indeed visible over these standing stones exactly as I had pre calculated months in advance. My heart pounded with excitement as I set up & tuned my camera etc in the dark as fast as possible. Sadly I wasn’t fast enough! Because as soon as everything was ready, these wispy streaky clouds blew in & within 2 mins the sky was blanketed with dense cloud! This photo was the first captured & only one in which I could see the Milky way, the rest were unusable so I deleted them ?
Normally I wouldn’t process an Astro photo if there were clouds streaking through it or high amounts of light pollution. That was the case for this photo in which was captured ages ago. Never thinking it would amount to much, I never looked back on it. However last night I decided to give it a chance & started editing it. My hope is that these clouds may add some drama or interest to this night scene? I may be completely wrong, but I do hope you like it & that it hasn’t turned out the fail I once believed it to be ?
For thousands of years the landscape around ‘Raphoe’ has been an important centre of ritual practise, a place of worship to where pre-Christian ancestors came to pay homage to their spiritual rulers such as the Sun & Moon. Near Raphoe on the summit of Beltany Hill stands this Bronze Age stone circle dating back 800 – 1400 BC. Beltany Stone Circle comprises of 64 standing stones although it is thought that there may have been originally 80 stones. One of the stones which is about 2 metres in height stands to the southeast of the circle. It likely had some function related to the pagan ceremonies held in the circle.