Lightscape / Night Sky

The tops of bare tree branches silhouetted against a dark blue night sky with a bright gibbous moon.
A view of the moon from the valley.


Gazing at the night sky can provide us a sense of wonder. Each season there are astronomical events that can be viewed in Cuyahoga Valley if conditions allow. On clear crisp evenings, it is possible to see faint six magnitude objects with a pair of binoculars, and ninth magnitude ringed nebula with a small telescope. Head out to one of the following locations and see what celestial adventures await you.

A zoomed in photo of a half moon glowing white with its cratered surface in view.
A view of the moon through a telescope.

NPS / Ryan Ainger

Western Views

  • Take a ¼-mile stroll to the Beaver Marsh from Ira Trailhead, one of the best locations for watching Mercury and other setting bright celestial objects. This is also a good place for observing lunar eclipses where it is possible to see the unfolding event as a reflection on the marshland waters.
  • The Jaite meadows, along the Buckeye Trail, are lowland areas that can easily be reached from Jaite or Red Lock Trailhead on Vaughn Road.
  • During the summer and times of heavy dew it is best to observe along the banks of Horseshoe Pond on Major Road. The higher elevation and forested eastern banks help to offset the penetrating heavy lowland dews, typically allowing good observation well into the late evening before the pond mists set in.

Northern and Eastern Views

  • The Pine Hollow parking area located on Quick Road has expansive views to the north. This is the best location for observing the Aurora Borealis.
  • Oak Hill Trailhead on Oak Hill Road allows observation of the darkest skies, making this an ideal place to observe meteor showers and other pre-dawn celestial events.

Celestial Events

On April 8, 2024 Cuyahoga Valley National Park and much of Ohio will experience a total solar eclipse. Learn more about this event on our eclipse page. Find other celestial events via NASA's Night Sky Planner.


Trailheads for Night Sky Viewing

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    Last updated: May 30, 2023

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