Dove Mountain is a new (1998), well-planned community in the foothills of the Tortolita Mountains, in the Sonora desert. It is located in Marana, Arizona, approximately 40 minutes north of Tucson. There are over 60 miles (97 km) of hiking and biking trails in Dove Mountain and the surrounding Preserves, many with trailheads suitable for stargazing. Elevations range from 2,700 to 4,300 feet (0.8 km to 1.3 km). It was named after the mountain range; Tortolita is Spanish for little turtle dove. An EarthSky reader told us: “The county and city are part of the Dark Skies Project so there are no streetlights and the residential lighting is limited. The only commercial property is the Ritz Carlton, which is secluded with limited lighting. There is U.S. Forest Service land nearby at the Tortolita Mountains so there is lots of undeveloped, open space.”
Deborah Byrd created the EarthSky radio series in 1991 and founded EarthSky.org in 1994. Today, she serves as Editor-in-Chief of this website. She has won a galaxy of awards from the broadcasting and science communities, including having an asteroid named 3505 Byrd in her honor. A science communicator and educator since 1976, Byrd believes in science as a force for good in the world and a vital tool for the 21st century. "Being an EarthSky editor is like hosting a big global party for cool nature-lovers," she says.