Dark Skies – Utah State Parks
The term “astro tourism” has morphed away from space travel and into the use of unpolluted night skies for astronomical, cultural and environmental activities.
Renowned for its scenic beauty, Utah is home to 48 state and national parks. With 11 certified “Dark Sky Parks” across the state, Utah is a prime destination for sustainable astronomical tourism.
Locals are lucky. Most Americans live in places where they cannot see the Milky Way, the stars or even the moon. From Antelope Island to Capitol Reef to Dinosaur National Monument, Utahans and tourists are never far from a sanctuary of natural darkness. Archeo astronomical milestones mark many ancient cultures, therefore Utah’s parks provide a unique cultural experience.
Whether traveling to a Dark Sky Park or simply enjoying the stars at home, it is possible to have both dark skies and safe neighborhoods with these simple tips:
• Light only where you need it.
• Light only when you need it.
• Shield lights and direct them downward.
• Use the minimum amount of light necessary.
• Select warmer white light bulbs.
Dark skies are a natural resource that needs protecting. The effect of light pollution is dramatic, but is immediately reversible.