Carpe Noctem – Seize the Night

Gunnison Valley Observatory is open for public viewing every Friday and Saturday evening from the second weekend in June through the second weekend in September.  The facility gates open at sunset.  Evenings consist of a brief astronomy-related program and multiple telescope viewing opportunities.  Admission is by donation and reservations are not required.  The Observatory is also available for a fee by reservation for private viewing parties.  The Observatory is located south of Gunnison at 2804 County Rd 38 across from the Hartman Rocks Recreation Area.  From Gunnison, travel west on Highway 50, turn left before crossing the Gunnison River onto County Road 38, continue around the airport runway then head south about a mile.  The Observatory will be on your left inside the dirt berm.  For more information on programs and visiting the Observatory go to www.gunnisonvalleyobservatory.com or call (970) 642-1111.

The Gunnison Valley Observatory is open for the season

Friday, July 20, 2018: Super Jupiter!
It’s our solar system’s largest planet, and it has affected the course of humanity in amazing ways.  Jupiter was seen by the Romans as their mightiest god, but it’s also been known as Zeus and Thor.  Jupiter helped Galileo to prove that the Earth isn’t the center of the Universe.  It even protects Earth from dangerous meteorite strikes.  Is there anything this super planet can’t do?!  Join Ranger Kara for the story of Jupiter, from our deity to our defender.  Telescope viewing of Jupiter will follow, weather permitting.

Saturday, July 21, 2018: Dark Skies
Have you ever seen the Milky Way or wondered at the many interesting things visible in a truly dark night sky?  Most people today have never seen our Galaxy or a dark sky.  Join Stu Ferguson in a discussion of diminishing darkness and the importance of dark night skies to living things, energy conservation, crime and safety, and human health and culture.

Telescope 101

The Observatory is a publically-owned community facility, operated by all volunteer staff and board of directors. Gunnison Valley Observatory offers access to professional quality star gazing and knowledge of astronomy.  Our 30-inch reflector telescope maximizes our thin and unpolluted Rocky Mountain atmosphere to bring distant astronomical vistas to the eyes of residents and visitors of the Gunnison Valley.

The Observatory is located on the east or left side at 2804 County Road 38 across from Hartman Rocks Recreation Area.  The Observatory itself is tucked in behind a light darkening earthen berm and can’t be readily seen from the County Road.  There is a sign and dirt parking lot on the left at the entrance.  The facility opens at sunset, approximately 8:00 PM in June and July and 7:30 PM in August and September.  A brief educational astronomy program is followed by viewing of the amazing night sky through a variety of large and small telescopes.  Admission is by donation and reservations aren’t required.

Gunnison Valley Observatory offers many exciting ways to support its mission and goals.  You can attend the summer Friday and Saturday public program series and telescope viewings, volunteer, book a private showing or become a financial sponsor.  For more information about the observatory, please browse through the website.  Carpe Noctem – Seize the Night.

Gunnison Valley Observatory By-Laws

Follow us on Facebook for the latest information on GVO events, comets, weather, meteor showers and all things astronomical. The Gunnison Valley Observatory is most effective when community members are inquisitive and interactive. You can support the observatory through volunteerism.

Observatory Building