Tips to improve your experience
Here are some top tips to help you make the most of stargazing in the South Downs:
- Check the phase of the moon to plan your trip – stargazing is best before a full moon
- Take a blanket or mat to lie on
- Wrap up warm
- Take some snacks and a hot drink
- Take a compass or use the one on your smart phone
- Download a star gazing app to help you identify constellations and stars
- Allow time for your eyes to adjust – this takes around 20 minutes so turn off any lights, torches and put your mobile phone away
- Use a red torch as you can look at red light without your eyes becoming overwhelmed and contracting with the light. White light changes the pupil diameter and excites the eyes cells for up to 20 mins. The same applies when watching night wild life.
In general, winter when the clocks change, is prime viewing time as you can view earlier in the dark night. Summer is better for observing the centre of the Milky Way in slightly warmer conditions!