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#376 Blakheaven

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Posted 30 July 2019 - 06:21 PM

I have been wanting to check out the Black Kettle area.  Is there a campground or is it "dispersed camping"?   It is about a 4.5 hour drive for me.

 

 

 

 

Black Kettle has campsite fire pits/grills, tables, and bathrooms. However those are more like concrete outhouse. I got to dead Indian creek. Feel free to PM any other questions you may have. Weather permitting I may be out there this weekend


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#377 DoodahMan

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Posted 06 September 2019 - 11:22 PM

When I lived in Corvallis, OR, the large parking lot for Mary's Peak was my favorite:

https://www.google.c...25228,21z?hl=en

 

Here in Bend, I go to Virginia Meissner Snow Park for planetary and other bright objects and when the other places are snowed in, but it is not as dark as I would like:

https://www.google.c...678,16.5z?hl=en

 

Further up he Cascade highway, there is a small pull in and the adjacent trailhead parking lot for Green Lakes, much darker, but closes from November to June due to snow:

https://www.google.c...=!3m1!1e3?hl=en

 

The parking lot at Paulina Peak, elevation 7900', is nice, but still brighter than I would like due to lights from Bend, La Pine and even the small towns to the East:

https://www.google.c...89,19.75z?hl=en

 

The lot at Dee Wright (volcanic) Observatory is also nice and also closes for Winter and Spring:

https://www.google.c...32,18.12z?hl=en

 

Finally, the site of the Oregon Star Party in the Ochoco mountains (reported earlier in this forum) is great:

https://www.google.c...=!3m1!1e3?hl=en

 

Have yet to check out spots near Pine Mountain Observatory or the summit of Steens Mountain


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#378 Chris Boar

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Posted 07 September 2019 - 06:35 PM

Just have to add to this. Visited the rim of Crater Lake Oregon last week during the new Moon. Up at 7500ft in a black zone. Clearest darkest skies I’ve seen. The Milky way looked like it was made out of silver, and the stars had a piercing diamond like clarity to them. A single 30 second exposure of Orion with my 85mm lens showed Barnard’s loop....which I have never seen before. 


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#379 John Verderame

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Posted 07 September 2019 - 07:00 PM

About a year and a half ago a local astro pal wanted to take a ride (I was living in Prescott, AZ then) to a spot about 20 miles north of Flagstaff, AZ, on Highway 89, just to photograph Orion with his camera.  He knew of a parking area with no lights to be seen anywhere, surrounded by pine trees.  It was so dark but for starlight that you almost could not see your hand in front of your face, and we took some short images of Orion and that was the first time I saw Barnard's Loop too.


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#380 thundherr

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 06:44 PM

i have not picked a viewing location away from home,  yet.   but it is a exciting idea.

 

i live along side a Texas state park, dinosaur valley state park.      https://tpwd.texas.g...dinosaur-valley

located south west of Fort Worth Tx.

 

the only light pollution is to the north because of a electrical plant.   

https://en.wikipedia...ear_Power_Plant

 

thanks for inspiring me with the idea of searching out more viewing locations.  

i will suggest this idea to my wife debrah.    she loves to travel.

Tommy @ Texas



#381 tothenorth

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Posted 09 November 2019 - 06:45 AM

My favorite place is Menorca. This is an island in the Mediterranean Sea with dark and clear skies: https://elgranobserv...-las-estrellas/

It has been named as a Starlight Reserve and they are building an observatory. 
But my big dream is going to Aoraki Mackenzie in New Zealand.


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#382 tchandler

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Posted 08 December 2019 - 09:26 AM

Wawanosh, home to some of the darkest skies in southern Ontario, complete with noisy frog serenades, which may be the reason for the scarcity of biting insects. It's hoped that this marvellous site will one day be designated a dark sky preserve. A person can dream...

 

Unihedron Sky Quality Meter registered 21.7, enough for Jupiter to cast shadows.

 

Image: ~30 second exposure with 28 mm (F/2.8) lens at f/4 (single exposure). Brightest "star" in the lake is Saturn. 

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Edited by tchandler, 08 December 2019 - 09:27 AM.

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#383 A8N6B3

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Posted 18 December 2019 - 08:15 PM

My club has an observing site about 70 miles or so north west of Oklahoma city that for the most part is very dark and quiet.Apart from local oil field traffic and the occasional local or passerby it feels like the area still belongs in the 1920s .the milky way is quite prominent in summer time minus the sky glow from OKC to the east and south east.


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#384 FredOz

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Posted 01 March 2020 - 01:46 PM

Kanab Point on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon

Do any of you know whether Kanab Point can be reasonably reached with a low-clearance vehicle?  I have a Subaru Imprezia, 4WD but low clearance.

 

--- Fred



#385 theropod

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Posted 06 March 2020 - 07:08 PM

Draw a line between Black Mesa state park in NW Oklahoma, and Clayton Lake state park in NE New Mexico almost 100 miles either side.

 

The Steens mountains, Trout Creek headwaters and Alvord dry lake,  in SE Oregon. That whole area is outstanding.

 

My yard in eastern Stone county Arkansas. In late winter/early spring, and again about late summer/early fall when our air gets clear and calm. We live on 60 acres, and are surrounded by thousands of acres, and 99% is deep mixed hardwood forest. The nearest town is less than 7,000 and a mountain shields us from most of the light. New moon nights can get stupid dark.


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#386 Russell Smith

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Posted 06 March 2020 - 08:49 PM

I'm borrowing (stupid dark).


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#387 thomasdoncarlos

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Posted 03 April 2020 - 12:40 AM

Around Phoenix: 

 

About 45 minutes from central Phoenix, up the Beeline Highway, there are a couple of spots.  There is a parking lot near Saguaro Lake.  The surrounding hills block any lights from the highway or Phoenix.

When I feel brave I go to that remote parking lot.  I have been there completely alone, on a beautiful dark night.  I enjoyed the stars, but, being a city boy, I spent some of the time, listening to the quiet, and waiting for some wild animal to attack me.

 

A little further up the highway is the road to 4 Peaks.  About a mile up that road there is a parking lot and some restrooms.    When my cowardice is in charge I go to 4 Peaks road.  With all of the drunks on their ATV's swarming around there, no animals would be foolish enough to attack.  And when nature calls, you can use the outhouse. 

 

It has been some years since I went out stargazing.  The spot of 4 peaks road was nice, because, if I am not misremembering,  it is up a little higher and has a view of the southern horizon.  One of my favorite targets  is Omega Centauri.  I think the 6th of June is the best day of the year.  You must have an unobstructed view of the southern horizon. 


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#388 astronomus1930

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Posted 07 April 2020 - 09:42 PM

Near Shoshone, CA - Death Valley National Park. Population 35 grin.gif

 

Getting there from Chicago definitely involves trains, planes & automobiles but it is more than worth it. Standing in the desert under a sky filled with more stars than I've ever seen before [or since] is beyond words. I gasped audibly when I saw M31 fill my binocular FOV.

 

Death Valley.jpeg


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#389 KaireBackyard

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Posted 01 May 2020 - 11:30 PM

Possibly one of my favourite viewing site is the area near Mount Bromo. Yes it is very far away from where i live, but my brother used to attend college near the area. And when i was 6-10 yrs old, my family often went there and i always brought my old 40mm binoculars, and stargaze all night long 



#390 jcj380

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Posted 03 May 2020 - 08:21 AM

Near Shoshone, CA - Death Valley National Park. Population 35 grin.gif

 

Getting there from Chicago definitely involves trains, planes & automobiles but it is more than worth it. Standing in the desert under a sky filled with more stars than I've ever seen before [or since] is beyond words. I gasped audibly when I saw M31 fill my binocular FOV.

Aside from a train ride through the desert when I was 9, I've always flown over the desert from Chicago.  I've been getting an itch to see it on the ground and this definitely reinforces that.


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#391 John Carlini

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Posted 10 May 2020 - 01:12 PM

My observatory in northern Wyoming has become my favorite spot.  Bortle-2 skies, crickets during the fall and the occasional wandering antelope.  This shot taken by my wife shows Heart Mountain to the south.  Yellowstone National Park is west and the Montana border is north.

 

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#392 tsk1979

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Posted 10 May 2020 - 04:02 PM

My observatory in northern Wyoming has become my favorite spot.  Bortle-2 skies, crickets during the fall and the occasional wandering antelope.  This shot taken by my wife shows Heart Mountain to the south.  Yellowstone National Park is west and the Montana border is north.

Do you have mosquitoes. I once images at Steen's mount and hart mountain in eastern Oregon in July, and was eaten alive.



#393 Jack Day

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 01:39 PM

A buddy and I recently bought some property in central Washington State.  Bortle 2 skies and an just a bit over an hours drive for me.  We have spent two weekends now clearing sagebrush, gravel going down this week hopefully!  Looking forward to new moon weeks this summer for some telescope time, so far all we have seen is just a lot of dust!  The gravel should take care of that.  There is even just a bit of cell signal, with a booster checking email and weather works well, and you can make and receive calls which is nice.

 

The property has no services; no water & no power, so was fairly inexpensive.  This was ideal for us since the one acre lots run about $6k we were able to buy two of them and develop the inner portion so we have a buffer in case the lots beside us (or behind us) ever sell.  To our south are wheat fields which the State of Washington is slowly buying to create sage grouse and pygmy rabbit habitat.  A few farm houses with lights, but they are a couple of miles away and are of no real impact.  Hope to have pictures soon, so far only have some before shots.

 

Below are some photos, including my buddy Rich gently removing sage brush for our entry drive way!

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#394 jcj380

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Posted 30 May 2020 - 10:07 AM

@Jack: Looks gorgeous!


Edited by jcj380, 30 May 2020 - 10:08 AM.


#395 NWOAC

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Posted 09 June 2020 - 09:22 AM

I love northern Ontario in Canada. Beautiful scenery and its Bortles #1 territory.

#396 mrsjeff

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Posted 09 June 2020 - 11:21 AM

I love northern Ontario in Canada. Beautiful scenery and its Bortles #1 territory.


Is there any place in particular that you like/recommend?

#397 seawolfe

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Posted 10 June 2020 - 07:34 AM

Is there any place in particular that you like/recommend?

Maybe some place that they don't speak only French Canadian?  grin.gif



#398 Philler

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Posted 11 June 2020 - 03:49 PM

Teter Rock, (aka, Teterville), Bortle 2 gray area, off the Kansas Turnpike I-35,  about 11 miles east of Cassoday Ks. It is very dark with open horizons in all directions from its highest point.  Some light glow from Wichita Ks to the SW.  It is open 24/7 to anyone. I had the place to myself both nights I observed there.. I used the top circle drive where the monolith rocks are. This is open range land, so watch out for cattle poop.  Drive carefully and only if it is reasonably dry, and it is bumpy.  It can also be windy there.

Check out the Teter Rock website for more info. and directions. 


Edited by Philler, 12 June 2020 - 10:32 AM.


#399 Philler

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Posted 12 June 2020 - 07:14 PM

Just a little tip if you are planning an astronomy trip or vacation to dark skies whether camping or at some sort of lodging.  I would call ahead to your destination, or email them, to see about restrictions or closures especially state or national parks, and make reservations if needed.  Even if you are going to be staying at some sort of private place like a guest ranch, call ahead and see if they are open and make reservations. I checked around, and it is ridiculous how they are still throwing this COVID 19 stuff at us, when we are engaging in an outdoor activity!  


Edited by Philler, 12 June 2020 - 08:53 PM.


#400 mg07

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Posted 21 June 2020 - 06:28 PM

I'm just returning from some time in Door County Wisconsin. Because it's a peninsula with Lake Michigan on both sides and far from any large city, the northeastern tip and islands north of that are Bortle 2. I observed from an AirBnB property near Gills Rock that had a 20 acre meadow with amazing horizons in all directions. There is also Newport State Park, an international dark sky park, nearby, though from what I can see of their observing areas high trees might some directions less than ideal. Overall amazing for something less than 5 hours from Chicago.
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