Astronomy & Night Sky Programs
NPS design by Kevin Poe & Joel Allen
Bryce Canyon is the ultimate place to learn about and enjoy the splendor of the night sky. Far from the light pollution of civilization, and protected by a special force of park rangers and volunteer astronomers known as "The Dark Rangers," Bryce Canyon is the last grand sanctuary of natural darkness. The night sky at Bryce is so dark we can see 7500 stars on a moonless night! Here the Milky Way extends from horizon to horizon like a vast silver rainbow! Here Venus, and even Jupiter, are bright enough to cause you to cast a shadow! No visit to Bryce Canyon is complete without joining the Dark Rangers for one of their educational and entertaining celebrations of natural darkness. Review our schedule below and plan your trip to the Colorado Plateau and Desert Southwest so that you can join us for astronomy.
Courtesy of Salt Lake Tribune
NIGHT SKY PROGRAMS
Watch this Video to learn more about our Astronomy / Night Sky Presentations
ASTRONOMY PROGRAM SCHEDULE
On average Bryce Canyon offers an astronomy program 142 astronomy programs per year! But the best time to come is when are sky is darkest -- during the week of the new moon or the week prior to the new moon.
WINTER (Nov. thru 2nd Sat. in March):
LATE SPRING (May):
LATE SUMMER (August):
All astronomy programs are followed by stargazing with telescopes (weather permitting). NOTE: Multimedia Programs are NEVER canceled due to bad weather. Only the stargazing half of the evening may be subject to weather related cancellations. THERE ARE NO ADVANCED RESERVATIONS, just arrive 15-30 minutes early to ensure getting a good seat. During Spring, Summer, and Fall we usually often two different astronomy presentation simultaneously. Each Dark Ranger has at least two different astronomy presentation he/she can provide so topics vary from night to night. Check at the Bryce Canyon Visitor Center upon your arrival to decide which astronomy related topic being offered is of most interest to you and where to go for its starting location.
Salt Lake Tribune
POPULAR MULTIMEDIA NIGHT SKY/ASTRONOMY SHOWS:
Presentations by Head Dark Ranger Kevin Poe:
Special Guest Astronomers:
Salt Lake Astronomical Society (SLAS) -- SLAS is Utah's largest league of amateur astronomers. Bryce Canyon National Park is proud to have SLAS as a long term partner in interpreting astronomy and furthering our efforts to protect natural dark sky. Club members occasionally join us for our weekly astronomy programs and come in force for our annual Astronomy Festival. SLAS members graciously share with our visiting public their personally owned big telescopes and their love of the night sky. Click here to learn more about SLAS.
You! -- If you are interested in sharing your love of astronomy and natural dark skies, consider applying for a position as part of Bryce Canyon's Volunteer Astronomer Corps. Click here for more information.
BRYCE CANYON ASTRONOMY FESTIVAL
Every Summer Bryce Canyon offers a 4-day astronomy festival where amateur astronomers from the Salt Lake Astronomical Society assist Bryce Canyon's Dark Rangers in hosting a world-class public stargazing event. This annual extravaganza offers more than just the opportunity to look through huge telescopes, also featured at each festival are:
- Famous astronomy/night sky guest speakers
Plan your next Utah vacation to coincide with the next Bryce Canyon Astronomy Festival.
FULL MOON HIKES
When: 3 times per week, seasonally
Duration: Come & go as you please.
Remember how Mom always said you shouldn't look at the sun and never through binoculars or a telescope? Well it's okay to do it with our special solar telescopes! Look for our staffed solar viewing station in front of the visitor center where you can get a safe look at our Sun -- the bringer of life and the giver of death!
SPECIAL ASTRONOMY EVENTS FOR 2013!
Did You Know?
Utah Prairie Dogs are a threatened species found only in southwestern Utah. Distinguishable by its white tail and black eyebrows, several colonies are located within Bryce Canyon's boundaries. More...