The Mauna Kea Visitor Information Station (Hale Pohaku) is located on Mauna Kea — a dormant volcano on the island of Hawai’i — at the 9,200-foot (2,800-meter) level. The center provides health and safety information and education about astronomy on Mauna Kea, which is home to many great astronomical observatories. Be sure to visit the website for more information about visiting the summit, altitude considerations, possible crowding, road conditions. Note that the summit itself is not recommended for stargazing, both because your eyes don’t function well at the high altitude and in order not to disturb the scientific observatories with night time traffic. The Visitor Information Station offers free stargazing programs throughout the year, which are also listed on the website. “Clear, stable air, low light pollution,” an EarthSky friend said about this location. The Mauna Kea Visitor Information Station is open from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm every day of the year.
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.