Greetings from Big Bend National Park

I recently turned 50. Back when I knew everything (about 19) I joined the US Air Force, and after training was stationed in Del Rio, Texas. For four years, I lived there, never looking to the west. Fast forward almost 30 years, and I had a chance to visit Texas again. I had read about the Dark Sky park that is Big Bend, where it was said you could see your shadow on a moonless night because the Milky Way is so bright. Our visit was all too short - one day in early June driving through the park, limited hiking. That evening we stayed just outside the park in Terlingua. I found my Milky Way - the one I never saw before, even in those years in west Texas. This is a single 60 seconds near midnight on June 6, 2019 just outside the park.


Big Bend National Park

Big Bend National Park features broad expanses of Chihuahuan Desert shrubland and grassland interspersed with smaller areas of high-elevation woodland in the Chisos Mountains. Rugged rocks and deep canyons along the Rio Grande are among the park's most striking features; wetlands and springs add to the park's biological diversity. Visitors can explore the rugged trails, seek out the colorful array of birds and wildflowers, and spread out on a blanket after dark enjoying some of the darkest night skies in the country.

State(s): Texas

Established: 1935

“It is deeply important to me that our beautiful national parks continue to be preserved and maintained - not just prevention of vandalism and oil/gas wells, but preserving the dark skies, the habitats, the history and culture.”

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