Suzanne B. Jack, known as Smokey Jack, loved the Wet Mountain Valley’s dazzling night sky. To preserve it, she helped form Dark Skies of the Wet Mountain Valley, a group of concerned citizens who worked tirelessly toward Westcliffe and Silver Cliff’s 2015 International Dark Sky Community Designation.
Smokey Jack died of cancer in 2004 at age 58, but her legacy lives on at the Smokey Jack Observatory.
Constructed in 2015 on the southwest corner of Bluff Park, the observatory boasts a retractable roof and a 14-inch Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope with computer-guided pointing and tracking.
The Smokey Jack Observatory hosts year-round stargazing events and is available for private star-viewing parties.
The best—and warmest—months to visit the Smokey Jack Observatory are May through September. The observatory is outside, so you’ll want warm clothes as temperatures drop rapidly after dark.
Smokey Jack Observatory