We live in an evolving universe, in an orgasmic nuclear dance of consciousness. Everything is changing, evolving, transforming. Wise men and women throughout history have tried to define the nature of the reality in which they found themselves. Myriad models have existed- most have fallen into the historical garbage heap, others cling by threads. We, these generations, are creating a new model.
The primary intention of the Conscious Life Conference and Exposition is simple: to participate in the conscious co-creation of a new world, a world based on new paradigms in science, in spirituality, in longevity, in local and global community, in relationship, in health and well-being.
The Expo is to bring us all together. This is a multi-day gathering of the tribes, a celebration of evolution and consciousness and a time to meet and do brainstorming sessions on who we are, where we are and where we are going.
Make plans for your nights spent camping out, under the stars, watching the celestial events and meteor showers. Comfortable: Hat, blanket, radio. Hot cocoa and sugary treats will help keep you awake and alert.
Across western North America you will be able to witness the moon blush red as it undergoes a total lunar eclipse. This dramatic astronomical event happens when the sun, Earth, and moon are precisely aligned so that our planet’s shadow completely blankets the moon’s face. (see more info)
orange, red or amber colored moon A total lunar eclipse is sometimes called a Blood Moon, because of the reddish tinge the Full Moon takes on when fully eclipsed.
November 19: Partial lunar eclipse
Last lunar eclipse of the year will greet sky watchers across North and South America. Technically a partial eclipse, up to 95 percent of the full moon will be cast within Earth’s dark shadow. During the maximum phase, it should briefly appear as a total eclipse, which means the lunar disk may show hints of orange or red. (see more info)
best places to watch the skies
The California Deserts are sometimes the best place to watch the nights sky, unless the winds are kicking up. Deserts are warmer than other locations and if you position yourself well you can be far from any city lights.
The California Foothills, both coastal foothills or mountain foothills – are the second best choice, if you can drive up canyons and get well away from the sprawling suburbs. Choice spots would be ridges above 2000′ elevation, with minimal trees. Oak foothills are choice spots. Higher than 4000′ and you will be chillin overnight.
The California Mountains are the prime choice for summertime recreation of all kinds. Primitive camping on the back roads will save you fees at a developed campground. The higher in altitude, the less atmosphere above you – the better night sky viewing is above. Choose a meadow or mountain ridge w/ minimal trees. Burn areas provide wide open spots, so you can seek old wildfire ridges. Nights can get pretty chilly most all year long, so go well prepared. Jackets, gloves, hats and all. Keep all campfires to a bare minimum after 9pm, so you can focus on the stars in the sky.
your pupils will welcome the dark skies
The California Coast is often covered with a thick layer of clouds and moisture, so star gazing along the ocean front is not always great. Central Coast and NorCal beaches have less less population, so these would be the ideal locations. Choose an inland valley w/ rolling oak hills and dirt roads, over the busy beaches. There might be clear days and nights, especially if forecast call for heat – check the local weather forecast for accurate up to date conditions.
Large urban areas, the cities and towns of California are the worst place you can sky watch, due to light pollution, traffic and smog. Drive to the outskirts of town – pick a dark location, a park, open space or forest lands nearby. Arrive before dark to get the best spots, well off the main road. Choose viewing spots without street lights and without passing traffic. Find a nice level spot to set chairs up and bring lots of snacks.
Los Padres National Forest; Valle Vista Campground
The place is gorgeous with wildflowers, after a good wet winter. Snow is possible at this location.
Way out on the edges of Cerro Noroeste, facing north. This paved route was recently renamed Hudson Ranch Rd. Access is at a wide spot / shoulder, on a curve. A steep drop on a dirt driveway. Large RVs and motorhomes should attempt this rutted, dirt hill only after walking it
This wide-open space site is a small campground, in Los Padres National Forest – with amazing views over the California Central Valley. Oak trees and pinyon pines. Windy days, Winter or Springtime is your best bet for a non-smoggy day. The Sierra Nevada mountains range can be seen across the valley, 100+ miles away. On rare days, snow capped Mount Whitney can be seen from this location. New bathroom vault toilet built 2011.
Inyo National Forest @ Yosemite East
Tioga Pass Hwy 120
This spectacular setting has a top-of-the-world feeling to it. Gorgeous meadow area, right along the main highway, with a small lake next to giant rock slides and impressive granite mountains.
The air is thin, the sky is clearest blue, the snow is melting, the stream is trickling and the nights are chilly – even in summer. Bring a winter coat and extra blankets, if you plan to camp.
Ellery is small campground is located just outside the EAST GATE of Yosemite National Park, along Highway 120 Tioga Pass. Easily accessible and fully paved, this camp is only open half the year due to deep snowpack. The snow usually melts by June, and camp often closes early due to higher elevation weather, sometime in October or November.
Lee Vining Canyon is to the east and Mount Dana is to the west.
Ellery Lake is one of those magical places, where you can spend all day out in nature – without needing to drive anywhere. Gorgeous high country scenery surrounds you in every direction. Walk over to nearby meadows, creeks or neighboring lakes. Climb mountain peaks or enjoy extended day hikes. Watch wildlife from camp or fish in the lake. Stargaze at night w/ the darkest skies around.
Or how about, walk to dinner? This place is easy walking distance to the historic Tioga Pass Resort, where you can enjoy a real, sit-down meal at the cafe. (Hope they will re-open 2020)
Ellery Lake – camp, hike, fish or kayak. No motor boats allowed.
Travelers heading to or from the National Park, often stop at Ellery to take photos and walk around. There is always a flurry of activity around easily accessible lakes and this one is no different. The busy highway and constant traffic may be heard from camp, but the ideal location and epic lake makes up for the inconvenience.
This NFS campground is one of many small camps located along the highway, on the east side of Yosemite National Park. This special place is in high demand, can fill up fast and is quite busy most of the summer.
perfect for tent campers
Small parking areas, tight walkways, landscape and minimal campsites makes this a “no-turn-around” kinda campground, so don’t bring that huge RV (cuz it won’t fit).
Most sites do not have enough room to park a second vehicle at all. Each campsite has a locker for food storage. (bear country = store food properly)
Ellery Lake Campground
• Elevation: 9,538′
• Number of Sites: 12
• Camping Reservations: No
• Sites Available: First come, First serve
• Vehicle Accessibility: Vehicle limit 28 ft.
• Length of Stay: 14 Days
• Water: Potable water
• Toilet: Vault
• Season: Closed during winter & spring
• Fee: Yes
• Operated By: National Forest Service
• Closest Town: Lee Vining, CA
Many, many a nights spent under the heavenly stars. Outside in the middle of nowhere, tent camping, with fresh air and very open views of the sky. If you’ve seen the night skies, you know how incredible they can be, especially in the High Sierra. Alpine late summers with minimal moisture in the air, where chilly night time is show time and day time is for napping in the hammock. Perhaps you stargaze out in the vast deserts in winter months, or only in summer near the coast. But how many people ever see an unidentified flying object?
Stargazing comes hand in hand with meteor showers, telescope camp outs, star parties, and yes, unidentified flying objects. Although, half of the reports are in day light. I’ve heard a few UFO stories in my day, but only one California dude who had a story about a New York U.F.O.
I dated a conspiracy/ufo guy in college, who turned me on to Art Bell (late night talk radio) who loved to discuss the more bizarre things in life.
I’ve driven near Area 51, but not camped. I have yet to see one UFO, nor a crop circle, but I am not a pilot either. After camping out 1000 nights, over 35+ years, you would think I would have encountered at least one by now. I’m kinda bummed. I would like to see one, if they do exist.
places known for unusual activity (in the night sky):
JULY 2019 – Many thanks goes to Pike County Lookout for initially spotting the #RockFire – in the Plumas National Forest, near Berry Creek, CA
Lookouts in the California National Forests
Ready to see far and wide – with wild terrain? Views for 100 miles out and the best scenery California has to offer. Be prepared to off road or hike to reach one of these destinations.
Below is a list of historic look out towers & cabins used for spotting wildfires. Some are located on steep granite peaks, ridge lines or dirt roads. 4WD may be recommended to reach some of these. Road conditions can change w/ harsh mountain weather, so be prepared to rough it. Thunderstorms are common on these mountain ridges.
Several of these places are cabins, some are stone houses, but most fire lookouts are basic metal towers – with high climbing staircases, so you must be in decent physical strength to haul your ass up this high.
Cabins are also called guard stations, huts, bunkhouses. Most are located on mountain tops, but a few exist in desert regions. Some are refurbished & available for overnight rentals. Bare bones furnishings, so forget the frills. People come up here for the thrills. To be outside w/ epic views, way away from the urban grind & to feel on top-of-the-world.
Always check for local fire conditions at nearest ranger station, obtain a free campfire permit when camping outside of developed campgrounds, and always practice fire safety when visiting our public lands. You can be held liable for wildfires. Outta control campfire, cigarettes, idling vehicles on tall, dry grass. Be very cautious with fires on the often dry, west coast.
This autumn meteor shower peaks in mid November & a great weekend for planning a desert camping trip around. Look in the eastern part of the nights sky these shootings stars, up to 10 per hour. Pre-dawn viewing is always best for meteor showers.
California Deserts are wonderful at this time of year. Many folks plan Thanksgiving celebration around this outdoorsy celestial event.
San Diego Deserts, San Ysidro Mountains
Montezuma Grade Montezuma Highway, Hwy S-22
High desert elevations, large boulders, highway w/ primitive campground. No trees, but much vegetation; flat parking, large tent spots, picnic tables, vault toilet. High desert mountain pass, with boulders, canyons and many dirt roads to explore.
• Elevation: 3,350′
• Number of Sites: 10
• Vehicle Accessibility: all
• Campsites Reservation: No
• Camp Fee: No
• Length of Stay: 10 Days
• Season: October – May
• Trailheads: Grapevine Canyon, Pena Springs, Anza Borrego & PCT (Pacific Crest Trail)
hike highcountry borrego
Culp Valley Trail, Grapevine Canyon, Montezuma Valley, Pena Springs, San Ysidro Mountains.