Of course, Mount Hamilton was a bit more isolated from civilization in 1888 than it is today. Back then, a work crew had to build a 26-mile (42 kilometers) road to access the summit. And there were no cars or trucks to lug equipment and supplies up. That task fell to horse-drawn wagons.
In the May 1988 issue of Astronomy, we celebrated the observatory’s centennial with John R. Gustafson’s look at the planning and construction of Lick as well as the early astronomical endeavors at the observatory. It will give you some historical perspective before you make your trip up Mount Hamilton.