Photographing the Milky Way with a GoPro

The prime time to photograph the Milky Way in Iceland is unfortunately in the Summer when we have 24 hour daylight. However, as we have very little light pollution you can still get amazing photographs of the Milky Way in the Autumn and Winter. Here is our guide to Milky Way GoPro Photography.

Milky Way GoPro Photography in Iceland


 

PREPARING FOR THE SHOT

When you want to capture the Milky Way with a GoPro, darkness is key, as you don’t want to pick up artificial city light in your picture. So, first of all, you need to be somewhere with low light pollution. You don’t need to get far out of Reykjavik to find a good spot. We love going to lake Thingvellir just 45 min from Reykjavik centre. It is peaceful and has trees and mountains to frame your shot. 

Secondly, you need a clear night sky. This is where Iceland can be tricky as we often have clouds, but the good news is that weather changes rapidly. So make sure to check the cloud forecast and weather at the national weather observation centre, where you can also check the Northern Lights forecast whilst you are at it: vedur.is

 

MILKY WAY GOPRO CAMERA SETTINGS

ISO

The ISO settings will allow you to control how sensitive your camera is to light. Basically the lower the number the less sensitive to light your camera is.

Exposure

The Exposure time will allow you to set how long your camera lets in light for, so for instance, photos of the stars and the Milky Way will need lots of light and normally require exposure times of around 30 seconds.

 

We usually use the following settings on our GoPro for photographing the Milky Way:

Set your GoPro to Night Photo

Exposure time: 30 seconds 

ISO level: 800

White balance: Native

 

 

TIME LAPSE OF THE MILKY WAY WITH A GOPRO 

Set your GoPro to Night Lapse Photo mode or if you are using Night Lapse Photo, set the interval to Auto.

Shutter Speed = 30s

White Balance = 4000K

Min and Max ISO = 800

Sharpness = Low

Color = Flat or GoPro Color

 

GETTING THE SHOT
As with all night photography is important to keep your camera still, so you will need a tripod/ Gorillapod. Or alternatively, use some rocks to place your camera on. Note that the wind in Iceland can be strong, so it is important to make sure it won’t move.

To make the photo / Timelapse more interesting see if you can get some foreground objects into the picture as well, a few trees will do the trick.

Point the GoPro in the direction of the Milky Way, frame your shot as you wish, and press the shutter button.

 

EDITING YOUR GOPRO FOOTAGE

After importing your images to your computer you will want to play around with it for a while on an editing program. Try increasing the contrast and altering the saturation to bring out the colours of the Milky Way.

 

SEE YOU OUT THERE! 

If you are not an experienced winter driver you can always contact us at Goecco. We can take you to areas in Iceland that are completely dark and allowing us to view and capture breathtaking views of the Milky Way and the Northern lights. Just send us a line at: goecco@goecco.com

 

 

Here are some more tutorial videos on Milky Way GoPro Photography

 

How to Shoot a Great GoPro Time Lapse

https://www.goecco.com/small-group-tours-iceland/snaefellsnes-peninsula-small-group-tour-winter/
Photo, Video, Iceland, Go Pro