LOOK: NASA Drops New ‘Angry’ Pic of Mt. Shasta

by Craig Garrett
Mount Shasta - stock photo

NASA shared a unique image of California’s Mt. Shasta by a pro photographer. The picture lives up to the legend surrounding the mountain. During eruptions of the enormous volcano in the north, spirits from ‘above’ and ‘below’ realms battle there. This is according to some ancient myths. This deep sky image, taken in late June by Ralf Rohner and courtesy of NASA, captures such drama well.

According to Rohner, the static earth image in the featured composite was taken during the blue hour. Meanwhile, a two-panel panorama tracking the background sky was taken later that night with the same camera and from the same location. “Within a few million years, Antares, some stars in the rho Ophiuchi system, and zeta Ophiuchi will all likely explode as supernovas,” reports NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day blog.

A colorful, star-filled sky surrounds Mount Shasta, an active volcano in Siskiyou County, California in this shot. Ralf Rohner originally shared the striking image on his Instagram.

The sky appears furious in the photograph. Ralf Rohner took the shot during the blue hour. The blue hour is a time period occurring just before sunrise or after sunset. During this time there’s a shift in color from dark to light. Antares, the brightest star in Scorpius, and the colorful Rho Ophiuchi cloud complex can be seen to the right of Mount Shasta. The red emission nebula surrounding the star zeta Ophiuchi is on the top right.

The Photographer was through the roof about NASA taking notice of his photo

Ralf Rohner has some impressive photography on his social media. According to his original post about Mount Shasta, he’s been aiming to shoot it for some time.

“Mount Shasta has been on my shooting list for quite a while and in June I finally had the opportunity to capture it under perfect skies.” Rohner is obviously very familiar with the legend surrounding the mountain. To me, the resulting image looks very much like a representation of [the] cosmic battle described above, with Rho and Zeta Ophichui being the hot lava stones thrown by Skell.”

Of course, the photographer was ecstatic when NASA took notice of his photograph. His caption to an Instagram post about it says it all. “I am totally excited to have received my 5th NASA APOD publication today!”

Mt. Shasta is a potentially active volcano in Siskiyou County, California at the southern end of the Cascade Range. It is the second-tallest peak in the Cascades and the fifth-tallest peak in California, with an elevation of 14,179 feet. Mount Shasta has about 85 cubic miles of volume, making it the greatest stratovolcano in the Cascade Volcanic Arc. The mountain and its surroundings are part of Shasta–Trinity National Forest.