Author Topic: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?  (Read 73 times)

tyrrcencifunc

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"Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« on: December 24, 2017, 02:23:06 AM »
Im looking for a few good public websites I can visit in northern NJ.  I live in Morris County so traveling in NJ is no situation.  Obviously I'd prefer a public site that I wont get chased off of!  Thanks!



Chris Smale

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #1 on: December 24, 2017, 03:36:07 AM »
<p>Turk -Consider joining Rockland Astro Club.  </p>They have permits to utilize Waywayanda SP in the Vernon area.   Otherwise some people head around Stokes State Forest.   Not Certain where they move but call the ranger station and I am certain They'll help.Dan in NY

Eric Ayyagari

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2017, 10:33:44 PM »
Hey fellow New Jerseyian and fellow Morris Countyian!    :-)

I try to get out as often as I can to dark sky sites.   My local site (since I really can't observe from from my place here in Lake Hiawatha) is Sheep Hill Observatory:

http://cleardarksky....SObNJkey.html?1

The site isn't dark, but the horizons are decent, the local light pollution is at a minimum and it's close.   

If I'm looking for dark skies locally, the best spot within an hour's drive is at Wawayanda State Park:

http://cleardarksky....awaNJkey.html?1

Wawayanda requires a permit to be on site, which you can acquire by joining the Rockland Astronomy Club, like Dan mentioned:

http://www.rocklandastronomy.com

Darker still than Wawayanda is Stokes State Forest, again as Dan said.   We have a spot where the two semi-annual Stokes Star Parties are held at the NJ School of Conservation:

http://www.teeterste...pes.com/stokes/

The logistics of using the site on weekends other than the two official Star Party weekends is tough.  If it's looking like a good night, we'll by-pass Stokes and drive the extra half-hour into Pennsylania to Shahola Falls:

http://tinyurl.com/klyr6a

If it's a REALLY good night and I can stand the 100 mile trip, each way, then we'll shoot up to Lake Taghkanic, which is also a Rockland Astronomy Club site and which also requires a permit:

http://cleardarksky....TagNYkey.html?1

That would be it for a one-night observing session where you are turning around and coming home afterward, rather than camping on site.   If conditions are forecast to be good over two or more nights, I usually consider Stone Tavern Farm in the Catskills:

http://www.stonetave...TAR_GAZING.html

http://cleardarksky....vnFNYkey.html?1

Well, hopefully these links are helpful!    Keep in touch if you are thinking about getting out to these sites.

Take care,

Robert Spencer

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2017, 11:26:08 AM »
Have you tried Jenny Jump state park. Every Saturday from April to November they have a star party and the public can attend. Look in the beginners forum for Jenny Jump State Park, I posted pictures and some information.

abtempoecar

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2017, 05:08:07 AM »
Thanks for all the info! I'm going to look into that Rockland Astronomy Club. Sounds like a good thing.

If I wanted to head up to Stokes, would I be allowed to on my own?

Are there any general  public observing nights at Sheep Hill? I live in Denville so it is right around to corner.

libulbinis

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #5 on: December 31, 2017, 08:33:08 AM »
Turk,

Here is a link to our astronomy club:

www.asterism.org

We are in Cranford, NJ.

Leon Vale

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #6 on: December 31, 2017, 04:03:48 PM »
Quote
Turk,

Here is a link to our astronomy club:

www.asterism.org

We are in Cranford, NJ.

Thanks!

percufareg

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #7 on: December 31, 2017, 08:26:33 PM »
I have a question about Sheep Hill - do I need to be a member to observe at the site?Alex

olnceratge

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2018, 09:48:26 AM »
I'm at Shohola Falls, PA most moonless nights. Great skies. Worth driving extra .5 hrs.

twenuvtentu

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2018, 12:12:25 AM »
Question about Shohola falls, where do you park? How long can you stay? Any permits needed? How about access to power?

Jeff Weiss

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2018, 03:29:32 AM »
No power at the park. The park has no hours or gates. I use three different places depending what part of the sky I want to view. It's open sky, but depending where you are on the lake shore, one side is always invisible below 30 degrees from the horizon. No big deal as there is always light dome below 30 degrees in any direction except North. North from there, the skies are really dark, but it requires another hour of drive.

Scott Etrheim

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #11 on: January 10, 2018, 01:56:06 AM »
This link has a overlaid light pollution map with "x" for known star party sites from about two years ago, from just north of New York City to mid-Penn. to south of Delaware. http://starmon.com/gis/east.html

Attached Thumbnails


witchcycsuti

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #12 on: January 10, 2018, 03:25:16 AM »
Are there any dark skies in New Jersey? What Mag level is considered dark?

Eric Graf

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2018, 06:31:23 AM »
There are some real dark skies in NJ, sometimes one can even see Milky Way in Jenny Jump park  .Alex

Grant Buchanan

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Re: "Dark" sky sites in northern NJ?
« Reply #14 on: January 11, 2018, 01:04:09 AM »
Quote
......So far was not able to see M101 from my backyard even though tried many times..... Alex

From Cherry Springs (dark sky park in PA) the spiral arms of M-101 really stand out as obvious in my 20-inch Dob. 

BTW, from my yard in south/central NY, with the same scope, M-101 is pretty bright, but it takes some effort to see the spiral arms.

 You need to take a drive over to Cherry Springs.