Stargazing at Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park - Night Sky - by Lian Law

Living in cities, it is almost impossible to have a good view of the stars. You would have to go to a place like Joshua Tree NP for a fantastic view of the heavens. 

In this high desert, it is very easy to avoid the glare of human civilization. Just walk a few feet away from any road or camp, and you are in total darkness. Also, the skies are clear most nights of the year due to the low rainfall. 

Arizona

Sedona - Oak Canyon - Cathedral RockThe state of Arizona is well-known for one of the Wold Natural Wonder, the Grand Canyon. But fun and adventure spots abound around the State. 

Although the southern part is known for its desert climate, there are a lot of green valleys, mountains, and forests - in the North - inviting visitors and residents for some adventure. 

Sedona Take Two

Sedona - Oak Canyon - Cathedral RockWhat the heck? You want to take me to the desert? What kind of vacation is that?

That was my wife’s first reaction when I said let’s go to Sedona, Arizona. I quickly explained that yes, Sedona is in the middle of the desert, but it is much more than desolate landscapes and sand.

That was last year. This year my wife was very excited to revisit this wonderful desert oasis. 

Last year, we drove through familiar California towns, palm trees, and windmills. And in Arizona, we encountered stark rock formations, rare lonely bushes, and a ferocious sandstorm. This year we decided to fly into Phoenix and drive for one hour and a half to Sedona.

Sedona Stargazing

This year we decided to go with professionals on a Stargazing tour. Sedona Stargazing runs an excellent tour using their huge telescopes to allow us to gaze into distant planets and stars.

Our guide was very knowledgable and seems to love talking about astronomy. He started by pointing out some constellations and then showed us a few heavenly objects with the telescope.

Sedona, Arizona

Sedona - Oak Canyon - Cathedral RockSedona and the valley surrounding it is perched at a 4500 feet elevation, which makes it much cooler than the Arizona desert. The valley is so hospitable to life, it attracted the attention of prehistoric people and natives since 11,500 BC. 

Today, it is a thriving tourist town and retirement community with many resorts, shops and restaurants. The tranquility of the scenery, beautiful red rocks and lush greenery attracts tourists from around the world. 

Joshua Tree National Park

This 800,000 acres park straddles the Mojave and Sonoran deserts in California. It is home to the most stunning rock piles, mountain ranges, desert views and an unexpected oasis here and there. 

Within the NP boundaries, you can enjoy an abundance of hiking and biking trails, bouldering and camping. The park is also a world-famous destination for rock climbers.