Daily Telescope: Seeing stars with an iPhone in the bottom of the Grand Canyon

Stars over the Grand Canyon.
Enlarge / Stars over the Grand Canyon.
Mitchell Yee
reader comments 63
Welcome to the Daily Telescope. There is a little too much darkness in this world and not enough light, a little too much pseudoscience and not enough science. We'll let other publications offer you a daily horoscope. At Ars Technica, we're going to take a different route, finding inspiration from very real images of a universe that is filled with stars and wonder.

Good morning. It's December 8, and today's photo comes from the floor of the Grand Canyon. The photographer, Mitchell Yee, admits that this is not the best shot one might capture from this remote location, but there's a reason—he shot it on his iPhone in August.

"While it's a fairly ordinary photo, what was amazing to me was the level of quality of cell phone photography," he told me. "Normally, I'd haul out my big Nikon but since we were hiking down to the bottom of the canyon to meet our dories, weight was constrained. So I skipped the extra 15–20 pounds of camera, lens(es), and tripod and instead enjoyed the 9-mile hike with my 18-pound pack. Of course, this shot could have been much improved with a 'real' camera on a tripod. But there I was, flat on my back on a sand berm, with the best camera I had at that moment, my iPhone 13 mini, and I still made the shot I wanted."

Dories, I'm pretty sure, are boats. But I'm kind of in "Afraid to Ask" Andy territory with that one.

In any case, I thought the photo was lovely, and I appreciate Mitchell sharing it.

Source: Mitchell Yee

Do you want to submit a photo for the Daily Telescope? Reach out and say hello.