Tue, Jul 05|
Manitoulin Eco Park | DarkSky Preserve
Stargazing Night Hike
Our Stargazing Night Hike is an immersive adventure through our hardwood forest after dark, with a focus on nocturnal wildlife plus orienting by star constellations. During this hike you will get to experience all the wonders our nighttime forest has to offer!
Time & Location
Jul 05, 2022, 9:00 PM – 11:30 PM
Manitoulin Eco Park | DarkSky Preserve, 18777 ON-6, Manitowaning, ON P0P 2C0, Canada
About the Event
Our Stargazing Night Hike is an immersive adventure through our hardwood forest after dark, learning about our local ecosystem and nocturnal wildlife, plus how to orient by the stars.
During the night hike, our experienced guides will explore the foliage, the plants and the animals surrounding us throughout the park utilizing traditional knowledge collected from many cultures.
We will also talk about all of the nocturnal and crepuscular creatures (animals most active at twilight) that we can think of and how to recognize them when they appear and do some experiments proving how most of us are essentially color-blind in the dark.
This night hike follows along our Mother Nature Trail (< 2 km hike on a fairly even gravel road) making stops to watch, listen for, and learn about some of the most beautiful nocturnal animals in our part of the world. As part of our adventure your Guide, and their trusty laser pointer, will teach you how to find key constellations using just your hands through a method called star hopping. You'll hear stories from different cultures about the ecosystem and the celestial bodies.
Guests will have the opportunity to use parabolic ears if conditions allow, a device which magnifies the sounds of the forest around you with the hopes of maybe hearing howls from the nearby wolf pack, seeing one of our rare and elusive flying squirrels or one of our Park’s many white tailed deer that often graze for food at night. You might even get really lucky and hear from our Barred Owl family, who sometimes like to follow us along our nighttime hikes, swooping from tree to tree.
Our Stargazing Night Hike is family friendly (ideal for children age 8 and older). Please plan to park 20 minutes before the start time to check in. Watch for a reminder email 1 day prior to the event for additional details on how to prepare for your adventure!
Events are held in ALL sky and weather conditions, except those deemed hazardous by the Eco Park (such as lightning or high winds). Our Guides offer stories & activities you can enjoy regardless of the optical view of celestial bodies. If the Eco Park cancels the event, ticket holders will be emailed in advance, and can reply to request to transfer to different dates this season.
~Please bring your face mask covering nose/mouth/chin, a full water bottle, clothing layers for all weather conditions, close-toed hiking shoes or boots, & natural insect repellent.
~We encourage participants to walk without artificial light as much as possible; for safety bring a flashlight with an amber or red cloth covering for dim light, headlamp with amber/red light setting, or cell phone with amber/red filter ap installed.
Book your tickets now and don't forget to reserve your overnight stay at https://www.manitoulinecopark.com/ whether in the DarkSky Campground or in the Forest Campground (closer to amenities) at Manitoulin Eco Park.
Adult | Stargazing Night Hike
This night hike follows along our Mother Nature Trail (< 2 km hike) making stops to do some naked eye stargazing and to listen for & learn about, some of the most beautiful nocturnal animals in our part of the world. Guests will have the opportunity to use parabolic ears if conditions allow, a device which magnifies the sounds of the forest around you with the hopes of maybe hearing howls from the nearby wolf pack, seeing one of our rare and elusive flying squirrels.
Child <12 | Stargazing Hike
Free ticket for a child under 12 years of age
Orientation to the DarkSky Preserve, Campground & Observation Field
The DarkSky Preserve has a no white light policy after sunset: no campfires; please have red filters for your flashlights, headlamps, and camping lamps; plan to arrive by sunset to drive a car in. The gate will be closed to cars after sunset.
The DarkSky Preserve or DSP includes an observation field plus campsites, the Stargazing Cabin, and Milky Way Bunkie for overnight guests. As a courtesy please keep voices low and cell phones on silent after sunset
No white light is allowed in the DSP including no campfires, cell phone screens, or vehicle headlights.
While we encourage event participants to walk without artificial light as much as possible, as a safety measure please be sure to bring your own flashlights and/or headlamps with AMBER or RED filters sufficient to colour and significantly dim the light shining through (you can attach cloth or cellophane paper with tape).
Astronomy guides will be at the front and back of the group with amber or red light sources.
On standard settings, cell phones should not be used as flashlights, or for taking pictures due to the white light of their screens and flashes. Alternatively, you can download an AMBER OR RED LIGHT app for your smartphone.
No laser pointers of any kind or strength (other than in use by our astronomy staff).
The DSP gate is closed to vehicles after sunset.
During all astronomy events, for safety all guests should stay with their guide and the group at all times. If you need to leave the event early for any reason, please be sure to notify one of the astronomy guides before you go.
All Event tickets are non-refundable. However, should DarkSky Preserve need to cancel an event, you will receive the option of either an opportunity to come to one of our future events, or a credit voucher in the amount of your purchase to be used at the Park during the same season, both pending availability.
All event tickets are non-refundable.
Events are held in all sky and weather conditions except those the Eco Park determines to be hazardous (eg. lightning, high winds).
Event tickets can be transferred to another date this season (pending availability) only if the Eco Park cancels the event. We will notify you by email in the event of a cancellation in advance.
To request change of date or for cancelations, visit: