Milky Way Glitters Over Arches National Park

Milky Way from Arches National Park
Astrophotographer Manish Mamtani took this image of the Milky Way in April 2016 from Arches and Canyonlands National Park in Utah. (Image credit: Manish Mamtani Photography |

Astrophotographer Manish Mamtani saw his first Milky Way on a spring trip to Utah four years ago. Since then, he's traveled to the state every year to capture the beauty of the night sky.

Mamtani took this image of the Milky Way in April 2016 from Arches National Park in Utah. The park is a hub for astrophotographers because the area is relatively dark and unaffected by light pollution .

"I got an image of Milky way arch rising over Mesa Arch in Canyonlands National Park that I have been dreaming about from past couple of years but couldn't get due to bad weather," Mamtani wrote in an email to

The Milky Way is a spiral galaxy, meaning multiple "arms" sprout from a central region and then swirl around it, like streams of water spiraling down a drain. It stretches between 100,000 and 120,000 light-years in diameter. Scientists estimate that the galaxy has approximately 400 billion stars. At the center of our galaxy lies a gigantic black hole billions of times the size of the sun. [How to Photograph the Milky Way in Light Pollution (Photos )]

Editor's note: If you have an amazing night sky photo you'd like to share for a possible story or image gallery, please contact managing editor Tariq Malik at

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Contributing Writer and Producer

Nina Sen is a freelance writer and producer who covered night sky photography and astronomy for She began writing and producing content for in 2011 with a focus on story and image production, as well as amazing space photos captured by NASA telescopes and other missions. Her work also includes coverage of amazing images by astrophotographers that showcase the night sky's beauty.