Today we went with Darin up to Kitt's Peak Observatory Visitor Center around 60 miles away. John and I were last here in 2015. Drive up to the observatory is winding to an elevation of around 6,800 ft for 12 miles. We had our picnic lunch and a bluejay was hovering over us hoping for some orts. Got a good picture as he posed for me.
|With Darin in front of Solar Telescope|
The Visitor Center has some interesting and informative displays as well as a gift shop. The walk around the area affords some good views of the different observatories including the solar tunnel. There were also bear and snake warning signs posted. Fortunately did not see any, although I would have liked to see a bear.
After surveying more than 150 sites, Kitt Peak was chosen for the first National Astronomical observatory. It is home to the largest collection of astronomical telescopes in the world sitting on the Tohono O'odham Nation.The peak has 25 optical and 2 radio telescopes. It was founded in 1958 and a lease signed for 200 acres with the Nation that is valid as long as scientific research is maintained. You can opt for a walking tour or do a self guided tour. Mayall 4-m telescope built in 1973 is the largest optical telescope on Kitt Peak. There are also night tours offered at different times of the year.
|2.1 m Telescope|
|Mayall 4-m Telescope|
|Drawing of Solar Tunnel Telescope|
|Solar Tunnel Telescope|
I wrote about this on my blog in November 2015.
If was a good day and upon returning to camp, spent more time with Darin in conversation. It is nice to have this time together. Sorry Kerry was not able to join us due to work.