IC 5146 - the Cocoon Nebula - is a complex mix of emission and reflection nebulae embedded at one end of a long steamer of dark nebula dense enough to almost totally block out the stars behind it. The reddish hydrogen emission is caused by a hot, young star near the center of the nebula. IC 5146 lies 4000 light years from Earth in the direction of the constellation Cygnus.
ASA DDM60 Pro, Pentax 125 SDP, Canon 5D Mk II. 5 x 10 min at ISO 1600. Taken at Kennedy Meadows, CA.