How do I Star Gaze?

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum

Star gazing is an activity that many people remember from childhood. On a clear summer night, looking up at the stars and attempting to identify the constellations learned about in science class, or just looking for shapes in general, was a great way to end the day. Fortunately, one does not have to be a child to star gaze. If you want to recapture the fun of this particular activity, here is what you need to do.

Star maps usually incorporated fanciful depictions of the constellations before the modern era.
Star maps usually incorporated fanciful depictions of the constellations before the modern era.

One of the best things about gazing at the stars is there is no need for high-powered equipment. For casual gazing, all that is required is identifying a few star gazing spots where there is a clear and unimpeded view of the night sky. The spot could be a clearing at the top of a hill, the roof of a tall building, or a stretch of beach along an ocean. As long as any ambient light in the area is not interfering with the ability to see the stars clearly, it is possible to star gaze for hours.

Amateurs may use binoculars for star gazing.
Amateurs may use binoculars for star gazing.

Having a comfortable lounge or chair will also make it easier to star gaze. Settling into a position that makes it possible to look upward without placing strain on the muscles of the neck will add to the enjoyment significantly. Imagine yourself settled into the backyard in your favorite chaise lounge, with the back reclined at the perfect angle. In that position, you can enjoy the beauty and wonder of the starts for hours on end.

High-powered telescopes can help someone star gaze during the day or night.
High-powered telescopes can help someone star gaze during the day or night.

For people who want to get a little closer, it is possible to use star gazing binoculars. The binoculars allow you to focus in on a section of the sky that holds particular interest and analyze it in more detail. People who enjoy locating constellations will probably find using equipment of this type will enhance the experience of gazing into the heavens.

Unless you are a professional astronomer, chances are that you have never used anything stronger than binoculars to star gaze. However, you and your family may enjoy a visit to a local planetarium. Facilities of this type usually feature observation areas equipped with equipment used by professionals. Even during the day, it is possible to peer through high-powered telescopes and enjoy the beauty of the stars. In some communities, planetariums offer short-term workshops that introduce children and teenagers to the fun of star gazing, and allow them the chance to experience their first rounds of supervised start gazes. Often, the workshops are available at no charge or a very nominal fee.

To star gaze is to retain one’s sense of awe for the natural world and the universe. When people engage in the activity of looking up at the stars, it is sometimes easier to put life’s little problems into perspective. You may even find that stepping away from daily cares makes it possible to tackle them anew with a fresh outlook. Regardless of your age, gender, or location, take the time to star gaze and enjoy every minute of the activity.

Our galaxy, the Milky Way, is believed to have up to 400 billion stars.
Our galaxy, the Milky Way, is believed to have up to 400 billion stars.
Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum

After many years in the teleconferencing industry, Michael decided to embrace his passion for trivia, research, and writing by becoming a full-time freelance writer. Since then, he has contributed articles to a variety of print and online publications, including wiseGEEK, and his work has also appeared in poetry collections, devotional anthologies, and several newspapers. Malcolm’s other interests include collecting vinyl records, minor league baseball, and cycling.

You might also Like

Readers Also Love

Discuss this Article

Post your comments
Login:
Forgot password?
Register: