A star-bejewelled reef beneath the Southern Cross

John Langmead_Mon Stars at AB_7624_20171009-2_Online
The larger Magellanic cloud galaxy looking lonely as the great arc of the Milky Way dips to the horizon framed by some low coastal cloud.
John Langmead_Mon Stars at AB_7615_20171009_Online
This small headland was luminously lit by the lights of a few houses which back on to the great ocean walking track.  It was a moonless night, and the Milky Way was dominating the south western skies (out of frame to the right).  In the very early hours of the next day it would climb at a shallow angle in the south eastern sky, an inconvenient time as I would be in bed.
John Langmead_Mon Stars at AB_7660_20171009-2_Online
Star reflections momentarily bejewelled this reef west of Marengo beneath the Southern Cross and the Milky Way.
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Apollo Bay nestled in the foothills of the Otways, with the last of the sunset and the beginning of the night show in the heavens as seen from a high vantage point at the top of a valley.  This image and the five which follow, were taken on the night following the cloudier night when the first three pictures above were taken.
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The other end of the Milky Way rising from the northern horizon, beyond the stark silhouettes of some eucalypts.  There were a lot of falling stars.
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The view to the north.  A shooting star is plummeting above and parallel to the long axis of the Milky Way.  The solitary tall eucalypts are seemingly drawn to align with the arc of the Milky Way.
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I normally don’t take photos of stars without some earthly reference point.  But the core of the Milky Way was high in the sky above me and I couldn’t resist.  The Milky Way stretched continuously overhead from north to south touching both horizons.
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The Southern Cross is embedded in the Milky Way, inverted at a 45 degree angle from its normal position as it seems to dive seaward along the path of the Milky Way towards the ocean.
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On my way back home to the open fire  after taking these photos, I stopped at the beach between Skenes Creek and Wild Dog Creek.  This beach is remote from any artificial lighting.  The Magellanic cloud seems to have sent a meteorite spearing towards the Milky Way.  The ship on the horizon was barely visible to the naked eye.  The dune grass and sand on the beach were cold and moist as a cold easterly chilled everything in its path.

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