See the stars at St Cyrus

ST CYRUS nature reserve will be the spot for some heavenly stargazing on February 2.

Learn all about the stars at the Winter Stars and Galaxies event, held by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) and the Aberdeen Astronomical Society as part of the BBC’s stargazing live events. The focus will be on outdoor stargazing, but there will also be indoor astronomical presentations and hands-on activities.

Therese Alampo, St Cyrus reserve manager, said: “We’re hoping for dark and clear skies, as the reserve is well away from the light pollution of nearby towns and villages so the stars are often spectacular. The telescopes will be trained on some really exciting stars and planets, with experts on hand to tell you all about them.”

If the weather isn’t clear, there will be indoor alternatives with plenty of interesting information and displays on stellar objects.

This free event starts at 7pm, meeting at the St Cyrus national nature reserve centre marquee. No booking is required, but entry will be restricted by available car parking spaces – so SNH advises to come along early. Call the reserve office on 01674 830736 for more information. Winter woolies, wellies, and a torch are recommended, as well as binoculars and telescopes if you have them. Hot drinks will be available to buy via a vending machine, but it would be sensible bringing a flask of your own in case it’s busy.

This is one of a series of events that SNH will be running throughout 2013 to promote the Year of Natural Scotland.

St Cyrus reserve is one of the most picturesque sections of coastline in north-east Scotland. It boasts the magnificent sandy sweep of Montrose Bay, towering volcanic cliffs, yellow dunes, and a spectacular wildflower meadow that supports a number of rare plants and insects.