Perhaps the open outlook to the east
Ensures the leaded panes catch every ray
And part explains why on the dullest day
My eye is drawn up to the colour feast,
After a rubbish couple of months, finally a holiday........a week in the Yorkshire Dales, only a 7.5 hour drive from Kernow but worth it!
A little cottage east of Hawes, nothing but sheep and pheasants and yes dark skies. Great food in small pubs with the friendly locals, Abbey ruins visited and gloriously recommended to sooth the soul and switch off the rat race (Easby Abbey nr. Richmond, Jarvaulx Abbey nr. Ripon), honestly THE best chips from The Chippie in Hawes and of course beautiful scenery!
With not much room in the car (have to take the family not just the scopes) I only packed the Heritage 100P and my BST eyepieces, opposite to my home viewing where I can only see the southern sky, here it was the West and North, typically for me the cottage had the only street light for at least 100 miles to the south.....still new things to spend time on........
So two clear nights.....once I got over the nervousness of total dark away from civilisation and wild animal noises I've never heard before....out with the little dob
Auriga....the 3 open clusters, M36/37/38, even with a waxing moon, still was able to pull these out, have to say that the 12mm BST is turning out to be a particular favourite, reckon I could make out about a dozen of the brightest stars in the pinwheel cluster. Stars Capella and El Nath (start the Taurus debate here...) a lovely distraction....now if I hadn't taken the wife and son would I have seen the famous nebulae with my 8" Dob?
On to Cassiopeia....and after the owl cluster.....and what a revelation. The first time viewing and frankly spent far too long staring at this beauty....actually think I could see it in my sleep that night! The whole constellation was a wonder confirming I need to be less lazy and get my scopes to local dark skies more often......just don't let work life get in the way
Spent a fair bit of time viewing the moon, decent views with 5mm BST, and just staring up with my eyes at a dazzling dark sky full with stars.
All in all a wonderful week, great days out, dark and clear skies at night, great food (and drink), if you get the chance, pack away some clean undies and a scope and head to the Yorkshire Dales
(If you're interested...opening lines are from a poem called east window by Alan Hartley relating to a stained glass window in Leyburn)