Monte Bello Open Space Preserve is a natural reserve in the San Francisco Bay Area, California. A stargazer shared the following with EarthSky: “At 2,200 feet (670 m), this large parking lot is the closest and easiest place to stargaze in the Bay Area. You need a special use permit from the Open Space District (easy to get), and the glaring lights of the Silicon Valley are right there—but on days where there is a low marine layer, or even if there isn’t—this is a great place to see planets, the moon and thousands more stars than you can see from anywhere below.” The parking lot at Monte Bello remains accessible until 2:00 am, and the no-fee permits can be requested here: http://www.openspace.org/visit-a-preserve/permits/astronomy-permit
Chelynne Campion is a Production/ Sales Assistant for EarthSky. Her family just purchased a telescope, and she's now learning to be a stargazer!