M51, Adam Block KPVC, 0.4m, ST-8


Observatories of the Southwest

Interstate 10 is the Highway to the Stars. Almost all of the largest optical telescopes in the continental United States, as well as the world's most powerful radio telescope, lie within two or three hours of the highway.

The optical telescopes all stand on mountaintops, which provide clear views of the sky. These remote outposts also offer spectacular views of both Earth and sky for the hundreds of thousands of visitors who drop in each year.

All of the major southwestern observatories offer special programs for visitors, including museums, tours, and star parties. Each is worth a side trip from the Interstate.

Southwestern Consortium of Observatories for Public Education celebrates the International Year of Astronomy in 2009

IYA logo
IYA SCOPE poster
International Year of
Astronomy Website (US)

SCOPE IYA poster,
activities and resources.

Sun Brochure
SCOPE solar poster, educational
activities and resources.
Visit the Observatories
of the Southwest

(PDF, 1.6MB)

We are Southwestern Research Observatories working together to inspire public awareness of astronomy through access and education.

For more information on SCOPE and to make suggestions and comments,
please contact Robert Wilson at Kitt Peak National Observatory.

Kitt Peak National Observatory
McDonald Observatory
National Radio Astronomy Observatory
National Solar Observatory
Whipple Observatory