Cherry Springs State Park Photography

Cherry Springs State Park Photography Magazine Extra

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Cherry Springs State Park, Pa. Photography Milky Way Photography

Cherry Springs State Park  Milky Way Photography – First thing we want to say to you is be sure to understand when the best time to go is before taking your trip.  April is not the time to go here unless you plan to get up or stay up until the wee hours of the morning. The milky way was not visible at midnight when we were here. June and July is the optimum time to go. The dark-sky field at Cherry Springs is open year. There are about  60 to 85 nights a year that are ideal for doing milky way photography.  You can see our gallery below.  The basic principal of doing night sky photography is to go when the moon is not visible. The date of the new moon with perfectly clear skies is an ideal time to go. You can also shoot about a week before the new moon since the moon does not rise until very late or should we say early a.m. Check out the moon rise times and see our dark sky resources page for the new moon chart. Remember pick the right month for optimum milky way visibility. After October the milky way goes below the horizon. It comes back up around February or March.

Cherry Springs State Park is an 82-acre Pennsylvania state park in Potter County, Pennsylvania, in the United States. The park was created from land within the Susquehannock State Forest and is on Pennsylvania Route 44 in West Branch Township. Cherry Springs, named for a large stand of Black Cherry trees in the park, is atop the dissected Allegheny Plateau at an elevation of 2,300 feet (701 m). It is popular with astronomers and stargazers for having “some of the darkest night skies on the east coast” of the United States, and was chosen by the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) and its Bureau of Parks as one of “Twenty Must-See Pennsylvania State Parks”.

Milky Way Photography Hot Spots Page – Click here    How to Shoot Milky Way Photography – Click here

Astronomers and stargazers appreciate Cherry Springs State Park for the darkness and clarity of its skies, which make it “perhaps the last best refuge of the natural night sky” in the eastern half of the United States. The sky at Cherry Springs has been classified as a 2 on the Bortle Dark-Sky Scale, meaning it has almost no light pollution. With optimum conditions, 10,000 stars are visible with the naked eye at the park, clouds appear only as black holes in the starry sky, and the Milky Way is so bright that it casts a discernible shadow.

Two of the park’s three astronomy domes, the walls prevent the wind from moving telescopes during observation.  Nighttime visitors may only use flashlights with red filters, and may only point them at the ground. The Astronomy Field has further restrictions on lights, and parts of the park are light-free zones. The DCNR spent $396,000 in June 2007 to buy mineral rights under 1,980 acres (800 ha) of the park and state forest to prevent natural gas drilling and associated development there.

Patterson State Park Pavilion: (3 miles east of Cherry Springs S.P.)

Image and Comments by Roger Wolfe. I used a 24mm Tamron at f8 for 20 seconds and ISO 1600. White balance was set on daylight and the pavilion was “painted with light” for about 10 seconds. If I were to do it again, I would open up a stop or two, lower the ISO a stop or two, increase the exposure time and wait for the darn planes to go away. I also would have turned noise reduction on; I had it turned off for attempted deep sky images at Cherry Springs. -Roger Wolfe

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When to go milky way hunting

When to go milky-way hunting. In mid-February the core of the milky way becomes visible in the pre-dawn hours before sunrise. It will be above the horizon during the day. Of course not the time to go hunting.  The core becomes visible for a longer time frame each night. It peaks in June & July when the core will be viewable all night. The best time is around midnight.   After this, the cycle goes in the opposite direction. Milky way visibility begins to decrease and go in the opposite direction becoming more and more visible after dusk. It will then disappear again in the winter months.

Where to Eat and Stay – Our Top Picks

Bed and Breakfast – Frosty Hollow Bed and Breakfast – 1077 Cherry Spring Road, Coudersport, Pa. 16915

Cherry Springs State Park Photography
Frosty Hollow Breakfast
Cherry Springs State Park Photography
Frosty Hollow Interior
Cherry Springs State Park Photography
Frosty Hollow Dining
Cherry Springs State Park Photography
Frosty Hollow Gift Shop
Photography Magazine Extra Cherry springs state park

We have come up with the best places to stay and eat while you are photographing at Cherry Springs State Park.  We have picked one Bed and Breakfast for you and one Motel with Cabins for you. We stayed at both of them.

Bed and Breakfast – The absolute closest place to the Park is the Frosty Hollow Bed and Breakfast. Not only is it the closest it is one of the best B and B’s in the area. It’s a warm welcoming atmosphere, the kind we search the world over for. It’s so good we didn’t want to leave.  Set in a remodeled barn and farmhouse, this creekside B&B is in a picturesque rural valley only a 3 minutes drive from US Highway 6 and 0.6 miles from a country club and golf course. Since 1992, the Ayers’ have been welcoming guests to the remodeled barn which they have beautifully decorated with their lifetime collection of antiques and heirlooms passed down from generation to generation. In 1998, they completely remodeled the farmhouse on this 10-acre property where Joe grew up.  They can now offer 10 guest rooms, each uniquely decorated with Gail’s special touch. They spare no expense here. The beds are top of the line and the pillows will make you never want to move a muscle. It will be hard to get out of bed and head down to the breakfast but once you get there you will be sure glad you did. You can see the pride the owners take in the food preparation.  Check out the Breakfast Pizza in the images. Wow!  If you have been here before you will know we are health conscious and there was great granola, yogurt and fruit for me which made us very happy.

When you arrive here look for Gail. She is a wonderful person and you can feel the warmth and pride she takes in the place when she greets you. Tell her Photography Magazine sent you.

www.FrostyHollowbedandbreakfast.com – 814-274-7419 – 1077 Cherry Spring Road, Coudersport, Pa. 16915

Motel and Cabins – TOP PICKS – Ox York Inn and Restaurant

Ox York Inn and Restaurant – 29 US Highway 6 – Galeton Pa,  814-435-2515 – http://www.ox-yokeinn.com

Cherry Springs S.P. Extra Photography Magazine Extra
Ox York Inn Cabins by the stream
Cherry Springs S.P. Extra Photography Magazine Extra

Motel and Cabins Ox York Inn and Restaurant

This is our motel or cabin pick for where to stay when photographing at Cherry Springs State Park. We like the cabins because you can sit outside right on the large stream that runs behind them. It is also the first motel/cabin rental that you will find when coming out of the southern route to route 6 from the park. Ken and Megan will make you feel so at home when you arrive to start your photography journey. Tell them we sent you. After a good nights rest head over to the restaurant for a delicious, filling, hot breakfast at a really good price. Grab some of that coffee to go before you head out to the park around dusk to start your night photography adventure. It’s super tasty. We took many cups to go as part of our night’s preparations. P.S. Looks like a pretty cool bar to hang out in too.

Cherry Springs S.P. Extra Photography Magazine Extra
Cherry Springs S.P. Extra Photography Magazine Extra
Ox York Inn Restaurant and Bar

Star Parties – 2015

Star Parties

Cherry Springs Star Party Pennsylvania: Sponsored by the Astronomical Society of Harrisburg and in 2012 will be held June 11-14, 2015.

Registration is now open:  http://www.cherrysprings.org

Black Forest Star Party: Sponsored by the Central Pennsylvania Observers, State College, PA. will be held August 22-24, 2014- Read More at: http://www.cpoclub.org

Near by Photography Spots

Lyman State Park is a good location to stop at while at Cherry Springs State Park area. You can also do dark sky photography reflecting off of the lake here. I will be back here in June or July when the new moon and the weather is just right to do this shot with the night skies.

Lyman State Park, photography magazine extra
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