It is the nearest big spiral galaxy to our own, the Milky Way.
As it is visible as a faint smudge on a moonless night, it is one of the farthest objects visible to the naked eye, and can be seen even from urban areas with binoculars.
Mosaic made of 8 (+1 for HDS) images which are the sums of about 10 frames with 10 min expositions.
Camera: Canon 350D(self-modded, IR filter replacement), Telescope TAL-250K (250mm 1:6 Klevtsov system with 0.7 reducer) on EQ6PRO equatorial mount, auto guiding.
HDR composition for bright central areas.
Taken during three nights in autumn 2009. Total exposition time is 12.5 hours.