In preparation for our dark skies events, the first of which is on the 10th-13th December, we’ve put together some top tips for stargazing at Near Howe……..
1. Plan where you’re going stargazing
At Near Howe we’d recommend you stargaze on the field where the stone bench is. Please let us know if you’d like to borrow the telescope or other stargazing equipment during your stay.
There are other amazing places in the Lake District to stargaze (such as Wasdale, the Borrowdale Valley or the Langdale Valley). Unfortunately we can’t allow our telescope off site, but you’re welcome to pre-book our complimentary stargazing pack.
Our stargazing pack (available to use at Near Howe or off-site) includes a picnic blanket, 2 x warm blankets, a flask of hot chocolate and cups, a red torch, binoculars and information on stargazing. We have two packs available on a first come basis.
Be sure to take the torch with you that’s provided in each cottage to ensure you don’t bump into anything when moving around Near Howe.
However, it can take up to 20 minutes for your eyes to truly adjust to the dark, so give yourself plenty of time to look at the stars.
When you’re out on the field, use the red torch provided in the pack (rather than the white torch). The red torch will help keep your eyes adjusted to the dark.
3. Keep warm and cosy
Even in the summer, it can get pretty cold after dark. Layers of clothing, a warm hat, and some blankets and a picnic rug will help you enjoy the dark skies above. Take some hot drinks and snacks if you’re planning on being out for a while.
4. Binoculars / Telescope
You can enjoy the night sky with just the naked eye. However, a good pair of binoculars can help you see more details at night, just the same as in the day. If you’re stargazing at Near Howe, you’re also welcome to borrow our Sky-watcher telescope.
5. Information, Guides and Apps
Information is provided in the stargazing pack. We’d also recommend the following apps to download and use when you’re stargazing:
– Star Walk 2 – it’s an easy-to-use app which includes guides to explore the night sky, tips for identifying stars and information about constellations, planets, satellites, asteroids and comets
– SkyView lets you point your phone at the night sky to identify stars, constellations, satellites and more