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San Tan Valley offers last view of Perseid meteor shower

PHOENIX — The Perseid meteor shower is coming to a close but Valley residents can still get a last glimpse at it with a hike in San Tan Valley on Friday night.

The San Tan Mountain Regional Park is hosting a hike starting at 8 p.m. that park ranger Tishia Stewart said will offer great views of the shower.

“We’ve got some beautiful nighttime skies here, very little light pollution,” she said.

Hikers will be taken on what Stewart called the Stargazer Loop, which runs about 2.2 miles and starts at the main trailhead.

Accompanying the views of the meteor shower, Stewart said astronomer Tony La Conte will lead the hike and guide people through the cosmos.

Starting at 6:30 p.m., La Conte will be teaching people to use sky maps to find their favorite constellations.

“He will be using his laser pointer to point out some constellations and we’re going to looking for the Perseids meteor shower as they streak on by,” Stewart said. “It’s going to be fantastic.”

Stewart said the hike is low-impact and anyone is welcome to join but said people should still come prepared.

“Bring a red flashlight instead of a white one because white light interferes with star gazing abilities,” she said. “Also, if park guests will wear closed-toed shoes and bring some water, that would be great.”

The entire trip around Stargazer Loop should take about an hour and half Stewart said, and people are welcome to bring their own chairs to sit and watch.

Those interested in joining the hike should meet at the flag pole by the visitor’s center at 6533 W. Phillips Road in Queen Creek.

The hike is free Stewart said, but there is a $6 per vehicle park entry fee.