The Mauna Kea Observatory is located at the summit of Mauna Kea, the tallest mountain in the world as measured from it’s base to it’s peak. The Mauna Kea Observatory is owned and operated by the University of Hawaii. The telescope pictured in the above images is their 2.2 meter telescope. The 2.2-meter telescope was the first large telescope constructed on Mauna Kea. It went into operation in 1970, and its early successes showed the excellent image quality and observing conditions at the top of Mauna Kea.
As I had already visited the big island of Hawaii beforehand, but not reached the summit of Mauna Kea, the main reason for visiting the Big island again was to visit the Mauna Kea Observatory. It had been on my bucket list for a very long time and I finally managed to do it! Not without disappointment however… As soon as we arrived we learnt that there was some native unrest over construction of a new telescope on the summit and hence was closed off to the public. Fortunately on the last night we were staying there they reopened for a short time!