Our solar system is located inside the Milky Way galaxy. The Milky Way looks like a band because its disk-shaped structure is viewed from within the Galaxy. We are looking out to the Milky Way itself something like 100,000–120,000 light years in diameter the entire thing contains approximately 100–400 billion different stars.
Just think about that for a second….100-400 BILLION stars. Now many people will never even see the Milky Way, let alone see it with there own eyes. I however am lucky enough to live in a place where it is very easy to see. Over the summer months in Lake Tahoe you can go outside just about anywhere in the area, look up and see exactly what you see in these photos. Standing on the rock here is my friend Barry again. He seems to be the lucky one standing in some of my favorite night photos. Also displayed is another panoramic photo including the Milky Way. This photo is printable up to 5 feet wide while still being very clear!