Do you love to camp under dark skies? Well then, this is the map for you!
When hunting for the perfect campsite to see the stars, you’ll want to use a dark sky map to guide you. This type of map is the perfect tool to help find the best campground based on a low Bortle number. If you are looking for a place to camp to see more heavenly bodies, our stargazing campground map is an excellent resource to get you started.
Bortle Scale Colors
A number of factors can greatly impact the Bortle level at a location from night to night. Use these colors on the map to get a rough estimate of about how light polluted an area is. As you move along our simplified light pollution scale, you will notice the skies get darker as you move further away from bright city lights.
White: Level 9 – Inner-city Sky
Magenta: Level 8 – City Sky
Red: Level 7 – Suburban/Urban Transition
Orange: Level 6 – Bright Suburban Sky
Yellow: Level 5 – Suburban Sky
Green: Level 4 – Rural/Suburban Transition
Blue: Level 3 – Rural Sky
Gray: Level 2 – Typical Truly Dark Sky
Black: Level 1 – Excellent Dark Sky Site
+ and -: allow you to zoom in and out of the map
Magnifying glass: find a location by name or latitude and longitude
Street Map: major roads, boundaries, and general map features
Topo Map: topographic map to see more detailed landforms
Light Pollution: layer that can be toggled on to see the amount of light pollution in an area
Campgrounds: layer that can be toggled on to see links to articles about each location
Layers Opacity: brighten or dim the light pollution layer to see the map underneath better
Stargazing Campground Guides by State
Since Alison and I have full-time jobs, we are slowly working on building out this list. Please check back regularly since we plan to eventually make this the best dark sky camping resource on the planet! This hobby is our passion.
Help with Light Pollution
While our map shows areas where you can escape the city lights to camp and enjoy dark skies, areas with dark skies are shrinking every day. Light pollution is a rapidly growing problem and your help is needed to fight it!
The International Dark-Sky Association is always looking for more advocates to help educate others about light pollution or even donate to the cause. If you are interested in learning more about this organization and helping with this growing issue, please check out their website.
About the Authors
We are avid stargazers Jason and Alison Takacs also known as “Roadtrippin’ with Takacs”. With our two boys Preston and Grayson, we seek out some of the darkest skies in the country while also going on many incredible hiking and other outdoor adventures. As part-time RVers, we try to see as much of this amazing world as possible in our spare time and hope you will join us through this blog and other forms of social media as we explore the night sky and other natural wonders as hardcore astrotourists.