Astronomy in the National Parks

Cresent Moonset over the trees on Shasta Bally

Cory Poole


Half the Park is After Dark
Whiskeytown National Recreation Area's night sky program season is in full swing for the summer season! We encourage you to come out to Whiskeytown to enjoy our ranger-led programs and events!

Programs We Offer:

Evening Astronomy Program (1 hour)

Friday evening at 9:00 pm; during August and September, start time is 8:30 pm

Spend the evening with a Sky Ranger and learn about wonders of the night sky. Discover the stories of how the ancient cultures used the sky to navigate and mark important seasonal changes. Learn about the challenges we face today as urban light pollution threatens the dark sky and find out what you can do to help. After a 20 minute presentation, the Shasta Astronomy Club will share their powerful telescopes to assist visitors with their celestial gazing. Meet at the Oak Bottom Amphitheater for the first half of the program, star gazing will take place at the Oak Bottom Beach parking lot.

Star Party

Saturday at 8:30 pm to 12:00 pm on 6/17, 6/24, 7/15, 7/22, 8/19, 8/26, 9/16 and 9/23 (weather permitting).

For up to date information call the Visitor Center (530) 246-1225 or visit

Experience the splendor of the dark night sky! Because of its unique position nestled within mountain ranges and miles from urban light pollution, Whiskeytown is a great place to explore the heavens. The night constellations often elude urban dwellers; but visitors are able to see deep into space aided by powerful telescopes provided by the passionate and knowledgeable Shasta Astronomy Club. National Park Service Sky Rangers provide engaging activities and share epic tales of heroes and demigods immortalized in the constellations. Meet at the Oak Bottom Marina Beach parking lot. As a courtesy, please dim your headlights on arrive if it is safe to do so.

Whiskeytown's sky rangers look forward to spending another great year of stargazing and special events with you. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

annular eclipse at Whiskeytown
From eastern United States to British Columba, over three thousand visitors came to Whiskeytown to view the Annular Solar Eclipse on May 20th 2012.  With the tremendous support of the Shasta Astronomy Club, over 50 solar telescopes were available for public viewing.  At maximum annularity, the “Ring of Fire” created one of the most memorable astronomical alignments many had ever witnessed.

Photo by Bob Thompson

Whiskeytown's Sky Ranger Programs and Special Events
Free Sky Ranger-led programs and Special Summer Events are listed above.  "Come for the sun... and stay for the universe!"

Whiskeytown artwork by Dr. Tyler Nordgren

Last updated: July 6, 2017

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 188
Whiskeytown , CA 96095


(530) 242-3400

Contact Us