Monday, 16 November 2009

Galloway Forest Park's dark skies score UK first!

We've just been awarded Dark Sky Park status by the International Dark Sky Association (IDA) - one of only a handful of such awards in the world! It confirms Galloway as being one of the best places for stargazing anywhere on the planet.

Limited numbers of buildings within the forest park's boundary mean light pollution can be kept to a minimum. The award has attracted a lot of media attention, with our own Keith Muir (head of Recreation and Tourism for FCS in Galloway) in demand from, among others, ITN, local radio and Radio 2's Jeremy Vine.

Work on achieving Dark Sky Park status began back in September 2008, and the formal application was submitted to the IDA six weeks ago. The final awards were decided at the Association's AGM in Phoenix, Arizona, over the weekend just past.

There's more details - and a map of suggested stargazing locations in the park - at

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Autumn Walks in the Galloway Forest Park

Despite the heavy rain and strong winds of recent days the trees are still managing to hang onto some of their golden leaves and the range of colours to be seen makes it well worth a walk around the Park.
Large numbers of Redwings and Fieldfares are also migrating from Scandanavia to spend the winter months in a warmer area. Look out for them in the Rowan trees as they stock up on the berries. If you are out at night and it is fairly clear, listen carefully for a high pitched whistle, the contact call made by migrating flocks of Redwings.