Southeastern New Mexico Sights

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National Solar Observatory–Sacramento Peak

National Solar Observatory–Sacramento Peak Review

The National Solar Observatory–Sacramento Peak, 20 mi south of Cloudcroft on the Sunspot Highway at an elevation of 9,200 feet, is designated for observations of the Sun. The observatory, established in 1947, has four telescopes, including a 329-foot Vacuum Tower that resembles a pyramid. One observation point has a majestic view of White Sands and the Tularosa Basin. During the day you can inspect the telescopes on a self-guided tour and watch live, filtered television views of the Sun. Interactive displays at the visitor center allow you to, among other activities, make infrared fingerprints. The community of Sunspot, home of the observatory, is an actual working community of scientists—not a tourist attraction—so you should stay within areas designated for visitors.

    Contact Information

  • Address: 3010 Coronal Loop, off Sunspot Hwy. Sunspot, 88349 | Map It
  • Phone: 575/434–7000
  • Cost: Visitor center $3, self-guided tours free
  • Hours: Visitor center daily 9–5
  • Website:
  • Location: Cloudcroft

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