Rocky Mountain National Park - Complete Information Resource



Comet Hale-Bopp - Rocky Mountain National ParkOne activity in Rocky Mountain National Park that is not as well publicized as the others is stargazing. Due to it's somewhat remote location and easy access to high altitudes, Rock Mountain National Park boasts some of the darkest, most transparent skies in the continental United States. 


Northern Lights - Rocky Mountain National ParkMany superb photographs of comets, planetary conjunctions and stunning shots of the night skies have come for Rocky Mountain National Park. The best viewing is on cold winter evenings when the stars are spellbinding in their number and brightness. Summer nights also provided many great opportunities for stargazing, including the comfort of the warm summer nights during viewing of some major meteor showers.

Earth's Planetary Rotation - Rocky Mountain National ParkPhotographing the night sky is best accomplished using a SLR camera (film or digital). Wide angle lenses work well for constellations and meteor showers with standard 50mm lenses best for comets. Films ISO speeds of 400 to 3200 are recommended with a wide aperture (f/1.2 - f/5.6) and exposures a minimum of 30 seconds. It should be noted that exposures longer that 30 seconds will result in a trailing behind the stars. This is due to a tracking error as a result of the Earth's rotation. The photo to the right shows this rotation well. The camera was centered on the "North Star", Polaris. This is Earth's northern celestial pole and the center of the rotation, as viewed from the northern hemisphere of our planet.

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