"A truly dark sky is a sight that few get a chance to see. For amateur astronomers who are used to backyard astronomy in the light-polluted suburbs, the sky at Spruce Knob will be an experience that you won’t forget. While the trip takes some time, it will be worth it. However, if your idea of roughing it is a hotel that doesn’t offer turn-down service, you might want to pass. While the amenities at The Mountain Institute make this far from a primitive site, camping is not for everyone. We recommend that you come prepared and have reasonable camping experience in order to fully enjoy AHSP."
This year's event was a sold-out success, which meant that our kitchen stayed busy as staff provided breakfast, lunch, and dinner to AHSP stargazers who had opted for a meal option. After working in the kitchen, many staff wandered out into the high plains to mingle with the observers and peer through their telescopes into the heavens above. Since astronomy is a part of the curriculum for school groups, the AHSP is a great chance for TMI staff to get acquainted with constellations.
To give you a sense of just how awesome the skygazing can be on the High Meadows of Spruce Knob, here's a collection of photos from NOVAC member Bob Traube, a regular visitor to Spruce Knob who took these photos over the 4th of July weekend. The descriptions of photos are his as well. Thanks to the staff and participants of NOVAC and AHSP who make the August experience terrific for everyone!
|This is the amazing Andromeda Galaxy. Its full extent covers three full moons. Designated as M31, the shot also includes two companion galaxies, M32 and M110. The "M" designation identifies them as members of the famed Messier List.|
|These and the following photos are shots of a passing thunderstorm.|
As Bob Traube wrote, "It is no wonder why we enjoy our visits to TMI so much!"