Westcliffe and Silver Cliff comprise the first designated International Dark Sky Community in Colorado and the highest in the world. Thanks to Dark Skies of the Wet Mountain Valley, Custer County residents and visitors bask in the benefits of viewing one of the nation’s starriest skies.

When gazing upon a star-filled sky, the world and time seem to stop. Thoughts clear and shift to matters that need attention, while connection with nature strengthens.

Stargazing is a free, constantly changing show that allows for great conversation and bonding. It fosters inspiration and imagination, alleviates stress and increases happiness. More importantly, it’s an activity enjoyed by people of all ages in all parts of the world.

Download a star-viewing app, such as Night Sky, for maps of the actual sky above you. For a spectacular experience in Custer County, view stars from the Smokey Jack Observatory in Bluff Park on the west end of Westcliffe.

Click here to learn about Stargazing Etiquette

[Photograph by Scott Dankof Photography)