Protecting the Night Sky

Creating a magical evening experience

The night sky over Grand Canyon reveals a cascade of luminous stars and planets. These ancient constellations have shaped the arts, sciences, and ideas across the millennia. The night sky is inspiring. It is primordial. It is also imperiled.

Grand Canyon National Park is one of the last places in the United States where one can experience a star-filled night sky. One-third of the world's population - including 80% of Americans - can no longer see the Milky Way due to artificial light pollution.

We are determined to protect the night sky for future generations, keeping Grand Canyon in the dark. 


What's been completed
  • More than 5,000 exterior light fixtures have been inventoried and cataloged throughout the park. 3,500 of these did not meet dark sky guidelines.
  • Light fixtures and very-low-lumen LED bulbs have been tested and installed for a wide variety of locations.
  • Fixtures that are part of the Historic Village District received new bulbs to keep with the historic integrity. 
  • 34% of the light fixtures have been updated, bringing the total dark-sky compliant lights up to 69%. 
  • During the 100th anniversary of the park in June 2019, Grand Canyon National park was certified as an International Dark Sky Park.  

 

What's planned
  • In the coming years, we will focus on the North Rim, Desert View, Phantom Ranch, and Tuweep to achieve 90% compliance for dark-sky lights. 
  • Expanded Evening Programs and new night sky viewing areas for visitor enjoyment and education about light pollution are being developed.

Generous support provided by

Sally and Craig Clayton, Kemper and Ethel Marley Foundation, Joe Orr, The Orr Family Foundation, and many other generous Grand Canyon Conservancy Supporters. 

International Dark Sky Park sign designed by Tyler Nordgren

Improvements and projects in Grand Canyon National Park are only possible because of the generous support from people like you.


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Current Priorities

Dark Sky Preservation

Grand Canyon has some of the most pristine night skies on the planet. We're working to keep it that way. 

Desert View Inter-tribal Heritage Site

Members of American Indian tribes are working with the park to celebrate the tribal heritage of Grand Canyon. 

Trails Forever

More than 400 miles of historic backcountry trails lead into the canyon. We want to ensure that they remain welcoming and accessible.