Eyes on the skies — November

Welcome to the Ontario Parks “Eyes on the Skies” series. This will cover a wide range of astronomy topics with a focus on what can be seen from the pristine skies found in our provincial parks.

November usually brings our first snows and the opportunity for some great outdoor adventures.

The early sunset and later sunrise provides us with almost 15 hours of darkness in which to observe nighttime splendors.

Here are our astronomical highlights for November 2023:

Continue reading Eyes on the skies — November

Befriending the beings of Lake Superior Provincial Park

Today’s blog comes from Zahra Ebrahim, Lake Superior Provincial Park’s 2022 artist-in-residence.

It was spring of 2022 when I got a phone call from the Friends of Lake Superior Park to let me know that I had been selected as one of the two 2022 artists-in-residence.

Lake Superior has played a huge role in my life.

When I was young, my family immigrated to Canada from Kenya and established Vancouver as our home.

Growing up, the Pacific Ocean was a companion, helping me feel a deep sense of place and belonging in a city and community that hadn’t yet understood how to embrace intersectional, racialized families.

The waters of the Pacific provided a connection to the coastal waters of the Indian Ocean that my family grew up on, serving as the backdrop to some of our most memorable moments.

Fifteen years ago, I moved to Ontario and adventured through its spectacular landscape. But it was only when I first camped on Lake Superior that I felt that same sense of place and belonging as I do on the west coast.

Continue reading Befriending the beings of Lake Superior Provincial Park

Eyes on the skies – February

Welcome to the Ontario Parks “Eyes on the Skies” series. This “space” will cover a wide range of astronomy topics with a focus on what can be seen from the pristine skies found in our provincial parks.

The month of February brings the promise of both warmer weather and clearer skies. So grab a cup of tea or hot chocolate, bundle up, and spend the day outdoors.

And when the Sun goes down and the stars begin to shine, don’t forget to head back out to enjoy the season’s beautiful night skies!

Here are our astronomical highlights for February:

Continue reading Eyes on the skies – February

Eyes on the skies – March

Welcome to the Ontario Parks “Eyes on the Skies” series. This space (see what we did there?) will cover a wide range of astronomy topics with a focus on what can be seen from the pristine skies found in our provincial parks.

March is one of the most glorious months to be camping, or even just spend time outdoors enjoying our parks.

On March 19, the earth passes through Spring Equinox. This is the day that formally marks the beginning of spring and affords equal hours of sunlight and darkness.

Here are our astronomical highlights for March:

Continue reading Eyes on the skies – March

From the Big Bang to beyond: the astronomical origins of the universe – part 3

In our previous post, we discussed the formation of stars from condensing balls of gas within interstellar nebulae, to the formation of open clusters of hundreds of sibling stars using images taken from the observatories in Killarney Provincial Park.

In this post, we will discuss how planets and life arose from the debris of star formation. Continue reading From the Big Bang to beyond: the astronomical origins of the universe – part 3

Eyes on the skies — May

Welcome to the Ontario Parks “Eyes on the Skies” series. This space (see what we did there?) will cover a wide range of astronomy topics with a focus on what can be seen from the pristine skies found in our provincial parks.

While spring “technically” begins in March, most of us living in cold climates tend to celebrate May as the true start to the season.

Here are our astronomical highlights for May, 2023:

Continue reading Eyes on the skies — May

Tips for night sky photography

One of the best parts about camping at one of our parks is the breathtakingly clear night sky. These clear skies provide the perfect backdrop to see the wonders of our solar system sprawled out above you.

Seeing these magnificent skies is one thing, but being able to capture them adds a whole other level to the experience.

Here are our top tips for night sky photography: 

Continue reading Tips for night sky photography