Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Palomar Observatory

 A two hour road trip is not necessarily bonus knitting time. We drove from the desert floor on the palms to pines road, over the mountains. It was a pretty winding road toward San Diego (where my sister was visiting and I didn't know) and up to the Observatory at Palomar. It is a 200 inch telescope and was the largest in the world when it was built. The dome weighs 1,000 tons.
 Having been built in the 1930's, it has beautiful wooden doors with brass handles. The visitors' centre is gracious and inviting. The dome was built with visiting areas and the foyer has a bust of George Ellery Hale, the driving force behind the project, with his quote, "Make no small plans, Dream no small dreams." He died before its completion.
 I love the classical shape of the pure white dome. D is a big astronomy geek. This telescope helped unlock some of the mysteries of black holes and mapping the galaxy.
 On the way back, I did manage to do some knitting. I started the grey stripes on my Daybreak shawl. We stopped and took pictures of the green golf courses in the valley of Palm Springs and Palm Desert.
We loved the variety of plants and wild life. There were roadrunners on our Desert Willow golf course, and creepy white lizards. They have now been joined by long legged bunnies. The gum trees remind us of Australia. The bougainvillea of Hawaii (and maybe North Vancouver) and the palms are just happy.

1 comment:

Linda said...

Hi, I'm a Scottish blogger visiting from Dancing Beastie. I loved this 'return visit' to Palomar. I was there with a Californian relative in 1983 - I remember there was thick fog on the way up, and I wasn't dressed for the sudden return to Scottish temperatures!