Storm clouds do sometimes come to
Chile's Atacama desert, known as the
driest place on Earth.
These washed through the night sky just last month during
the winter season, captured in this panoramic view.
Drifting between are cosmic clouds more welcome by the
region's astronomical residents though,
including dark dust clouds in silhouette against the
crowded starfields and
nebulae of the central Milky Way.
Below and right of center lies the
Large Magellanic Cloud,
appropriately named for its appearance in starry southern skies.
City lights about 200 kilometers distant still glow along the
horizon at the right, while bright star
shines above them in the cloudy sky.
(Las Campanas Observatory,