2 On The Road Blog

After 12 years of full-time rving, we've sold our truck and trailer but we're still traveling. Email us at wowpegasus@hotmail.com if you would like to contact us.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Kitt Peak National Observatory

Kitt Peak is about 50 miles SE of Tucson. We've driven past the mountain before and you can see a couple of the telescopes from the highway.
Once you get off the highway you follow a winding mountain road at 8% grade for 12 miles.

This is a model of where the telescopes sit on the top of the mountain.

View of some of the telescopes from the top of the Mayall 4m Telescope.
This is the McMath-Pierce Solar Telescope. The right portion extends another 300' into the mountain.
There was a drawing but we don't have a photo of it.
Of course the astronomers sleep during the day. There's a sign posted in front of each dorm building reminding people to be quiet during the day.

This is the 2.1m telescope. It was hard to get a photo of it through the dirty observation room windows.

We were headed to the 4m ( 4 meter telescope which refers to the size of the mirror) Mayall Telescope which is the one on the right. In front of where I am walking you can see some left over snow.
Course I had to make a snowball and throw it at Nolan. It missed!

We saw this blue bird fly in front of us and Nolan got this photo of it sitting on a branch. I believe this is a Mountain Bluebird.
We continued our walk to the Mayhill Telescope. It sits at 6975' so we were huffing and puffing more than usual. This is a model of the telescope because it was too big to photograph.
This is a photo of the exterior of the telescope that explains what everything is called.

There was an observation deck halfway up the telescope. You can't really tell in this photo but Tucson is in the distance. The tall mountains in the center background are the Santa Catalinas, home to Mt Lemmon.

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