Carpe Noctem – Seize the Night

Gunnison Valley Observatory is open for public viewing every Friday and Saturday evening from June 14 through September 14.  The facility opens at sunset, approximately 8:00 PM in June and July and 7:30 PM in August and September.  Evenings consist of a brief astronomy-related program and multiple telescope viewing opportunities.  Admission is by donation and reservations are not required.  The Observatory is also available for a fee by reservation for private viewing parties.  The Observatory is located south of Gunnison at 2804 County Rd 38 across from the Hartman Rocks Recreation Area.  From Gunnison, travel west on Highway 50, turn left before crossing the Gunnison River onto County Road 38, continue around the airport runway then head south about a mile.  The Observatory will be on your left inside the dirt berm.  For more information on programs and visiting the Observatory call (970) 642-1111.

Volunteers needed!

The Gunnison Valley Observatory is looking for volunteers to assist with our summer season which begins on Friday, June 14 and runs through Saturday, September 14.

We need small scope operators, public greeters and assistance with general maintenance.

No astronomy experience is needed, but a strong desire to learn is essential.

For more information contact Mike Brooks via email at

The Gunnison Valley Observatory opens for the season Friday, June 14.

Friday, August 23: Where Are We?  Do you know your full cosmic address?  Join Park Ranger Dale for the first public night of the summer to discover our place in the Universe.  From the solar system to the Milky Way, you'll learn about where we are, how we move through space, and just how big the Universe really is.

Saturday, August 24: Venus  Earth's neighbor Venus is named after the Roman goddess of love and was once imagined to be a tropical paradise.  Today we know that Venus actually has surface temperatures exceeding 800 degrees and atmospheric pressures higher than those found at the bottom of Earth's ocean.  But was it always that way?  Join observatory volunteer Derek Brooks to learn about Earth's surprising neighbor and her many secrets.

Telescope 101

The Observatory is a publically-owned community facility, operated by all volunteer staff and board of directors. Gunnison Valley Observatory offers access to professional quality star gazing and knowledge of astronomy.  Our 30-inch reflector telescope maximizes our thin and unpolluted Rocky Mountain atmosphere to bring distant astronomical vistas to the eyes of residents and visitors of the Gunnison Valley.

Gunnison Valley Observatory offers many exciting ways to support its mission and goals.  You can attend the summer Friday and Saturday public program series and telescope viewings, volunteer, book a private showing or become a financial sponsor.  For more information about the observatory, please browse through the website.  Carpe Noctem – Seize the Night.

Gunnison Valley Observatory By-Laws

Follow us on Facebook for the latest information on GVO events, comets, weather, meteor showers and all things astronomical. The Gunnison Valley Observatory is most effective when community members are inquisitive and interactive. You can support the observatory through volunteerism.

Observatory Building


Courtesy of Mike Brooks

Orion Nebula, (Messier 42) taken in November 2018, with a Canon 60da camera

Young Astronomer Award 

Courtesy of Mike Brooks

Gunnison Valley Observatory President, Chris Floris-Madison, presenting the Young Astronomer Award to Karavela Zeiter