UPDATE Fall 2011: All observatory systems are unavailable until further notice. The observatory is currently in transition from a focus on deep-sky, long exposure astro-imaging, to a new focus on lunar and planetary webcam imaging and remote video astronomy. During our transition between equipment and configurations, all CMO systems will be down. We will update this website and email our customer group when the new equipment is in place and tested. Thank you for your continued interest in Cherry Mountain Observatory.

WELCOME to the Cherry Mountain Observatory and David Plesko's astronomy images. Cherry Mountain Observatory is a fully automated, robotic observatory located outside of Fredericksburg, Texas. The observatory is focused on advanced astro-imaging and visual exploration using leading edge technologies and approaches. Our goal is to leverage best-of-breed hardware and software products to maximize data and imaging quality through manual and automated data gathering techniques. We continually research and revise our approaches and methodologies as well as the hardware and software utilized in powering the Cherry Mountain Observatory.

We now provide Internet-based remote access for rental of telescope time on our full combination of Meade LX200R 10”, Televue NP101is and 127is APOs, and RCOS 14.5” Carbon Truss Ritchey Chretien Telescopes on either our Paramount ME mounts, or in certain configurations on our Atlas EQ-G. Each scope can be configured with either our SBIG ST-4000XCM One Shot Color, STL11000-M (C, LRGB and narrowband filters), or Mallincam Color Hyper Plus CCD cameras for the purpose of deep-sky imaging (long focal length or wide-field) or remote video astronomy. Our skies are dark (average of 21.4 mags/arc sec2 on the SQM), transparent, and provide excellent seeing (average 1.4 arc sec, with 1 arc sec common).Please see our RENT SCOPES page for details.

Update Summer 2010: Please share our excitement on the great coverage Cherry Mountain Observatory has received in several major amateur astronomy publications in 2010.

“Astronomy” Magazine February 2010 Reader’s Gallery. David Plesko from Cherry Mountain Observatory and Warren Keller, astronomical image processing master, collaborate on this image of Thor’s Helmet.

“Amateur Astronomy” Spring 2010. “Cherry Mountain Man” David Plesko’s journey to the creation of the remote observatory of the same name.

“Sky and Telescope” Magazine, March 2010. “Observatories on the Web” by Andrew Macica, highlights the prominent Internet-based remote telescope services available across the globe.

“Sky and Telescope” Magazine, April 2010. Reader’s Gallery collaboration on NGC2903 with Warren Keller. Link to the page coming soon!

This homepage is dedicated to the images taken from the Hubble Space Telescope, arguably the most important advancement in astronomy since the invention of Galileo’s original telescope almost 500 years ago.

Astronomy Picture of the Day

out of the ordinary...  out of this world

Antennae Galaxies NGC
Black Eye Galaxy M64
Cluster of Diverse Galaxies Dark Matter Ring in Galaxy Cluster
Galaxy NGC 4449 Papillon Nebula N159-5
Small Magellanic Cloud Sombrero Galaxy M104
Spiral Galaxy M100 Spiral Galaxy NGC 1300
Spiral Galaxy NGC 1672 Whirlpool Galaxy M51