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Author Topic: Best place in Texas to see stars?  (Read 8637 times)

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Offline codejockey

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Best place in Texas to see stars?
« on: April 14, 2011, 11:45:18 AM »
Hi all, I am interested in booking a camping trip boondocking so as to get a great view of the stars and perhaps the Milky Way.  Can anyone tell me the best place within say a day's drive to do that?  I'd like to plan a trip, but I'm not sure of where to go.
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Offline huizarr

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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2011, 11:48:39 AM »
There is that observatory in the Davis Mountains (McDonnell I believe).  I would venture if it is good enough for an observatory it should be great to see stars.
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Offline campfreak

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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2011, 12:14:24 PM »
" Deep in the heart of Texas!!"  OK, sorry, someone had to do it...

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Offline Yellowkayak

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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2011, 12:31:04 PM »
Palo Duro Canyon and Cap Rock Canyon in the pan handle area!

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Offline pupateer

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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2011, 12:38:37 PM »
I'd agree with the previous poster and say that west Texas is the place to go. Unfortunately, recent wildfires have destroyed large parts of west Texas, including the area around the McDonald observatory near Ft. Davis. The hill country will work, but you'll need to stay away from the Austin/San Antonio area. You might get some good viewing at Mother Neff SP near Belton. I went camping in Huntsville SP about 15 years ago and had some amazing night skies to view there as well.
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Offline bupkis

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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2011, 12:45:42 PM »
"Go west young man."
Away from the lights and frills of the cities!
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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #6 on: April 14, 2011, 02:13:15 PM »
Well, I'm going to Caprock Canyons SP over Memorial Day weekend, so hopefully the skies will be clear!
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Offline dgeddes

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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #7 on: April 14, 2011, 03:27:45 PM »
They have Star Parties at Lake Whitney near Hillsboro.  We are thinking of going to one of these this year:

http://www.astromax.org/lw/lw-summer2004.htm
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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2011, 03:36:15 PM »
I was actually at Lake Whitney SP about 2 months ago, but I didn't really see as many stars as I'd hoped to.
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Offline jakestir

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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #9 on: June 08, 2011, 08:59:39 AM »
I know this thread is a couple months old, but I'll give some input anyways [:D]

There's a place named Fort Griffin that's only about a 2.5 to 3hrs drive west from the DFW area.  They have decent campsite and host stargazing parties once a month.
http://www.visitfortgriffin.com/index.aspx?page=7

Their facebook page as more info also.

They have some cool old buildings also.
In this photo you can see the milky way pretty good: http://flic.kr/p/9RwgFg

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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #10 on: June 08, 2011, 11:55:18 AM »
I was down in Texas back in 2001 visiting my brother and we went out to a cabin in Southwest Texas halfway between Langtry and Dryden off on US-90 called Myers Spring. I saw so many star, the whole Milky Way. I don't know how ancient peoples could see patterns in the star to make shapes like Orion the Hunter. There are just so dam many stars!
Steve
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Offline bdanntx

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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #11 on: June 08, 2011, 11:18:43 PM »
This might help:
http://cleardarksky.com/csk/prov/Texas_map.html?Mn=cameras

http://cleardarksky.com/csk/coverage.html

The Davis Mountains are one of the darkest viewing areas in the lower 48.  The sky is amazing there.  Anywhere in the Big Bend area is fantastic.

The Panhandle is good too. 

Caprock Canyons SP

I don't know where you are located, but Possum Kingdom State Park (yes, it is open again since the fires) is the best combo of close & dark for the DFW area that I've found.   

Offline TX_F2

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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #12 on: June 08, 2011, 11:24:56 PM »
Agree with the others, going out to the Davis Mountains or Caprock Canyons SP is great viewing.
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Offline bdanntx

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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #13 on: June 08, 2011, 11:28:02 PM »
Caprock is pretty nice during the day too...

Offline Blondie2tx

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Re: Best place in Texas to see stars?
« Reply #14 on: June 08, 2011, 11:49:39 PM »
Brazos Bend State Park off of 1462 is a very nice park with gazing tower.  Tons of wildlife, alligators, pier fishing.....no wildfires down here.   Mosquitoes might be a problem, but a very nice park.  No swimming though.   About 30 mins from Houston, great for riding bikes.

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