Pine Mountain Observatory

Pine Mountain Observatory, a University of Oregon facility

description

The Observatory consists of three telescopes that gaze out at the stars from atop a 6,300-foot-high ridge in the Oregon Badlands just 26 miles (but about an hour’s drive) east of Bend.

The Observatory is open to the public. The educational experience begins at sunset as a tour-guide gives a presentation about basic astronomy and what astronomers do and how they do it – including how telescopes and digital CCD Cameras work. After dark, the guides show visitors objects through the various telescopes, CCD Cameras, and a pair of giant binoculars, and point out various objects of the night sky visible with naked eye.  Some of the tour-guides set up their personal telescopes for guest viewing – some of the scopes are larger than the telescopes in the domes!  Amateur astronomers are welcome to bring their own telescopes and binoculars as well. There is a primitive Forest Service campground nearby for folks to spend the night.