The Astrophotography of Matt Dieterich
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The Astrophotography of Matt Dieterich

Star trails and aurora over Mount Rainier from Reflection Lakes. This photograph was selected by the United States Postal Service for a new 'Forever Stamp' celebrating the National Park Service 2016 centennial.

The year 2016 is the centennial anniversary of the U.S. National Park Service, which manages over 400 parks, monuments, and historical places across the United States. To observe this anniversary, the U.S. Postal Service recently issued a special series of stamps celebrating the National Parks, featuring images from 16 parks across the country.

One of those images was taken by astrophotographer Matt Dieterich of Morgantown, WV, whose image of star trails over Mt. Rainier was selected by the Postal Service for this historic series of stamps. The opportunity couldn’t have happened to a better person: not only is Matt an accomplished photographer, he’s an enthusiastic supporter of the National Parks, and even spent a summer working at Mt. Rainier National Park in Washington state. On the following pages, Matt gives us some insight into his photography, how his image ended up on a postage stamp, and why the National Parks are such an important resource.

If you would like to own a part of history, Matt is offering a limited-edition series of prints featuring the image of Mt. Rainier that appears on the stamp. Head over to his website for more information.