Public lands are some of the best places to enjoy the dark skies. Atop the Cumberland Plateau in Kentucky and Tennessee, Big South Fork National River & Recreation Area offers presentations that guide visitors through the night sky, and telescope viewing of stars, planets, nebulae, galaxies and the International Space Station. It’s an out of this world experience! Photo by Josh Bandy, National Park Service.
Spreading across Long Valley in California, the Volcanic Tablelands are a vast and unique landscape formed 700,000 years ago. Small canyons and bluffs dot the mostly flat area, offering amazing night sky views. Carved into the gray, red and pink rocks are extraordinary petroglyphs, mysterious symbols created by Native Americans centuries ago. Archaeologists can only speculate on their meaning. Photo of Bureau of Land Management site by Brandon Yoshizawa (www.sharetheexperience.org).
From its rocky coastline to the top of Cadillac Mountain, Acadia National Park in Maine will take your breath away. Day or night, the sights and sounds of the park give visitors memories they’ll cherish for a lifetime. Famous for sunrise, the park is also a terrific place to enjoy the night sky. Photo of the Milky Way from Little Hunters Beach by Joshua Snow (www.sharetheexperience.org).
Located on the outer portion of Massachusetts’s Cape, Cape Cod National Seashore’s 44,600 acres encompass a rich mosaic of marine, estuarine, fresh water and terrestrial ecosystems. Here you can explore pristine sandy beach, lighthouses, cultural landscapes and wild cranberry bogs. Photo of the Milky Way rising over a salt pond by Jatin Thakkar (www.sharetheexperience.org).
Arches National Park in Utah is the perfect place to snuggle into your sleeping bag and spend the night counting stars. Towering rock formations reach for the Milky Way as the magnificent landscape surrounds you in silence. Photo by Allen Utzig (www.sharetheexperience.org).
Balanced Rock at Arches National Park in Utah beneath the amazing Milky Way and night sky. The park has over 2,000 natural stone arches, in addition to hundreds of soaring pinnacles, massive fins and giant balanced rocks. This red rock wonderland will amaze you with its formations, refresh you with its trails, and inspire you with its mesmerizing night skies. Photo courtesy of Mike Mezeul II.
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Visit Arches National Park in Utah at night, and enjoy stunning views of the starry night. Pictured here, a hiker takes in the gorgeous views of the Milky Way underneath the Delicate Arch. For more breathtaking photos of the Milky Way, check out our stellerstories at http://on.doi.gov/1FOTNsC.
Photo by Jacob W. Frank (www.sharetheexperience.org).
Stargazing is out of this world at Arches National Park in Utah. Photo of the Milky Way over one of the park’s many rock formations by Manish Mamtani (www.sharetheexperience.org).