Author Topic: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?  (Read 394 times)

contiostetti

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If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« on: December 28, 2017, 12:27:09 AM »
If it where me it would be in Portal Arizona where it's reported to have the best weather and dark skies in the US
How about you?



imlukaro

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2017, 02:02:25 AM »
I wouldn't move *anywhere* just for dark skies. Good to excellent seeing has to also be a part of the equation, and probably the more southern sky available, the better. Lots of clear nights would also be important.

If it's just "dark" as the quest,I might as well stay right at my camp on Indian Lake NY - SQM readings of 21.75 are typical (shows as a gray zone on CSC). Of course right now I'd be observing in 2 feet of snow on the one clear night in the next 4 weeks, with a temp of around zero..... or lower.

But for all around observing conditions, I'd live in Hawaii - someplace closetoMauna Kea, for easy access to the Keck visitor's center observing area. Or maybe the US Virgin Islands, observing from the one that is mostly national park land.

galpaydabta

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2017, 05:33:54 AM »
I would live on the Big Island. Somewhere between South Point and Palaha. Dark sky and warm weather at night. Dry climate.

Second choice would be east of Tucson.

bersrorexnutg

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2017, 04:37:19 PM »
I tend to agree with the views Tom Clark posted here on several threads. Unless you are a hermit, with no SO, and have few interests outside of dark sky astronomy, areas like the boot heel of NM are rather dreary places. Who wants to drive forty miles to buy gasoline or two hours for a meal at a ethnic restaurant?

nontpremlapi

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2018, 08:36:22 AM »
Agree! I don't want to long drive to store or eat! I don't mind live in green or even blue zone in Midwest. All my travels to dark sky!

Jack Jefferson

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2018, 02:36:24 PM »
I lived in Maui for 10 years and spent a night up at Haleakala once a week, the chance of clear skies was around 90% at 7500 feet, wish I could go back, they have a Costco there since 1996 and the island life gives you a little of everything


Ralph Sonberg

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2018, 04:05:14 AM »
Somewhere where there are no giant centipedes.

Ryan Wilton

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2018, 05:33:30 AM »
Quote
Somewhere where there are no giant centipedes.

Never found one in my shoe, only saw a few during the day near the shore for some reason

Christian Shim

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2018, 05:44:51 AM »
Like others, I imagine the Big Island would be near ideal. It combines great seeing, dark skies, reasonable chance of darkness with lots of diversity in scenery, "civilization" and many activities beyond astronomy to keep you and yours entertained.

It is also the one place my SO has seen and said that, unconditionally, she would move. If I can find us jobs and a good house we can afford, we can move. Easy, peasy, right?

Adam Washington

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2018, 10:32:31 AM »
Why the US? There are lots darker places...Austrailian outback, Parts of Africa and South America, I'd like to visit Easter Island with those huge stone heads, and that island Godzilla lives on(keeps away the riff-raff.)

Quas Padilla

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2018, 03:23:46 AM »
I'd live somewhere at an elevation of 1415040 feet. That's the altitude of the ISS. It's as far away as I can get from the loons that say bright = better.

Sam Citadelle

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2018, 05:34:01 PM »
I'd take this into consideration - but it's not my sole concern

Cory Bass

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #12 on: January 13, 2018, 02:05:21 AM »
Quote
I'd take this into consideration - but it's not my sole concern


Some years ago my wife and I were thinking of buying a small second place somewhere along the Arizona-New Mexico border. There are some pretty dark skies between Springerville and Silver City. I personally like the Silver City New Mexico area.. Robert's Lake and the Gila National forest. But we realized that was impractical, we were never going to leave San Diego.. So we bought a small place in the mountains nearby. Not the darkest skies but dark enough, the weather actually has seasons but it's the high desert so 90F is hot. No bugs, lots of clear skies.

For me, this is it. This is the best place to live.

Jon




asagnata

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2018, 12:27:37 AM »
Like most people, I wouldn't move just to get dark skies. I'm too tied to my extended family, which is mostly in the U.S. Northeast. The Northeast is a great area in many ways, but unfortunately astronomy isn't one of them. It does have areas with reasonably dark skies, but it tends to be cloudy, and hazy in the summer.The second-biggest concentration in my extended family is in the San Francisco Bay area. The Bay Area is also great in many ways, but it probably has the worst access to dark skies of any large western city. Also, it never gets snow, which would be very sad for me.As for Portal, AZ, the Chiricahuas are a fascinating and beautiful mountain range, but I don't think they're sufficiently alpine to satisfy my high-mountain cravings. And again, living in an area that gets no snow would get me very depressed in short order. Plus, it's a long, long, long way to anywhere with a hint of culture and sophistication. Not that those are essential to me on a day-to-day basis, but I think being as isolated as Portal, AZ, would get to me eventually.I have sometimes considered the Owens Valley. It's very dark, has excellent transparency, and instant access to one of the best mountain ranges in the Lower 48. And it's within plausible distance of civilization.

wallnewsspheryz

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Re: If you could live anywhere in the US for the darkest skies?
« Reply #14 on: January 18, 2018, 06:50:46 AM »
Quote
Like most people, I wouldn't move just to get dark skies. I'm too tied to my extended family, which is mostly in the U.S. Northeast. The Northeast is a great area in many ways, but unfortunately astronomy isn't one of them. It does have areas with reasonably dark skies, but it tends to be cloudy, and hazy in the summer.
The second-biggest concentration in my extended family is in the San Francisco Bay area. The Bay Area is also great in many ways, but it probably has the worst access to dark skies of any large western city. Also, it never gets snow, which would be very sad for me.
As for Portal, AZ, the Chiricahuas are a fascinating and beautiful mountain range, but I don't think they're sufficiently alpine to satisfy my high-mountain cravings. And again, living in an area that gets no snow would get me very depressed in short order. Plus, it's a long, long, long way to anywhere with a hint of culture and sophistication. Not that those are essential to me on a day-to-day basis, but I think being as isolated as Portal, AZ, would get to me eventually.
I have sometimes considered the Owens Valley. It's very dark, has excellent transparency, and instant access to one of the best mountain ranges in the Lower 48. And it's within plausible distance of civilization.


Tony:

I think the south eastern Arizona region does suffer from the summer monsoons and it does get hot.. Silver City, New Mexico not far from there, it is like an undiscovered Flagstaff, it has a small university, a certain amount of history and culture.. It is in the mountains, in Gila National Forest, there's snow in the winter..

But the Owens Valley is a good call. You are in the rain shadow of the Sierra's, the valley floor is 3000-4000 feet, the peaks to the west are up to 14,000 feet, those are some rugged mountains, beautiful country. One thing about the Owens Valley is that the light pollution is unlikely to get worse. The regions growth has been stifled for more than 100 years because the City of Los Angeles astutely bought up the water rights to the Valley and the Owens River. But it is hot in the summer, it's not far from Death Valley and culture is probably as distant as it is in Portal.

Jon