National Meteor Watch Day is June 30. Visit the Darks Sky Parks of Arizona to celebrate National Meteor Watch Day and explore the night sky.

The Grand Canyon, Arizona is a Dark Sky Park
The Grand Canyon, Arizona is a Dark Sky Park
NPS Photo compliments of Mike Quinn

National Meteor Watch Day doesn’t have a founding father that anyone knows of. However, it is a reminder one day a year to stop and see the stars. While the Northern Hemisphere touts the best visibility for the Northern Lights, Arizona touts Dark Sky Parks. Parks where people gather and are awe-inspired by twinkling little stars and shooting stars.

The Dark Sky Parks of Arizona

Arizona has the most – dark sky parks in the world with over 16 IDA certified viewing areas. It has been loved by astronomers for sky watching since the early 1900s. The reasons? Great weather, tall mountains, and a clean atmosphere. With National Meteor Watch Day around the corner, it would be good to check these out before you plan your trip!

1. Grand Canyon National Park

We have to start with Grand Canyon National Park. “Half the park is after dark” is located in some of the most remote lands in the United States. The park encompasses 1, 217, 262 acres, and 277 miles of the Colorado River Gorge. In 2016 the Grand Canyons earned IDA’s Dark Sky Park status. You will want to stop here for National Meteor Watch Day.

2. Flagstaff Area National Monuments

Only hours away from the Grand Canyon are the Flagstaff Area National Monuments. The national monument area was created to protect nature and archeology. The three sites include Wupatki Canyon, Walnut Canyon, and the Sunset Crater Volcano. All of which are worth the day’s trip. All three parks fall under the IDA’s dark sky designation.

Kingman, Arizona's dark sky
Kingman, Arizona’s dark sky
Photo compliments of Piqsels

3. When In Doubt Check the Arizona Bureau of Land Management

For those who don’t wish to spend vacation dollars on state and national parks, the Arizona Bureau of Land Management manages over 12 million acres of public land. This land is available for off-grid camping. My personal favorite is the BLM land in the Hualapai Mountain Range. Probably because it’s home.


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