Exploring Joshua Tree National Park

I finally got the chance to visit this park that is bigger than the State of Rhode Island!

On my way to Twenty Nine Palms, the city where the park is located, I stopped by a wind farm located in North Palm Springs for a quick time-lapse photo sequence as the scenery of those giant turbines and the clouds was irresistible; then I drove to the Sky’s The Limit Observatory and Nature Center before getting into Joshua Tree. There was a special event for astronomy enthusiasts open to the general public at the observatory.

Joshua Tree National Park has become very popular within the past few years, perhaps due to the explosion of social media, who knows, but I would recommend everyone to avoid visiting this place during holidays such as Fourth of July (when it falls on a Friday or Monday), Labor Day or Memorial Day weekends. Why? Because the park gets crowded and dangerous. I saw people driving at high speeds all the time, drunk, and there were no park rangers around.

The park was designated as an international dark sky park in 2017 and although the sky is not 100% dark, when the night falls is when you see the magic. The unobstructed views of the Milky Way and so many other elements in the sky will make you wish for a delay of the sunrise.

North Palm Springs wind farm
Making a time-lapse photo sequence
On my way to Joshua Tree National Park
Rules at the Sky’s The Limit Observatory
Preparing the telescopes and photography equipment
Huge telescope ready for the night sky
Making some photo tests near at the park

Ralph.

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