This is a star trail, single exposure, lasted 21 minutes, taken at night from the summit of Mount Rocciamelone (3,538 m), Italy.
Just the natural consequence of my previous photo "Milky Way Above Sea of Clouds".
Here you can see how in this twenty minutes the whole night sky, including the Milky Way (the halo in the center image), has shifted slightly to the right (west) of the pyramidal north face of Monviso (3.841 m).
This happens because Earth is rotating to the east.
The bank of clouds was obviously still there, slowly moving at an altitude of about 2.700 meters, illuminated by the lights of the plain.
That evening/night almost all the mountains around were submerged by clouds, but I do not mind this... actually it's already full of pictures with mountains and stars.
Generally I do not like star trails, but I must say that this is not a very common scenery... it's a sort of natural abstract.
Actually I do believe that, like many other most popular forms of expression, night photography must be production of meaning, not just a mere exercise... so, although this photograph looks like a scene taken from a sci-fi movie, the important difference is that this is pure reality, demonstrating how everything is constantly moving, even in a relatively short period of time, like twenty minutes! :-)
©Roberto Bertero, All Rights Reserved. This image is not available for use on websites, blogs or other media without the explicit written permission of the photographer.