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Well, it finally happened...I've had a straight up, real time WOW experience.

Late last night/early this morning,(02:20 to be precise) whilst waiting for the boxing to start (Froch got a boxing lesson for those interested).

I went outside for a smoke and took the bino's with me (celestron 20x80), I'm very new to astronomy so the few stars I know I tend to stick to whilst learning. Anyway it was a very clear sky and Orion was very bright. As I "swooped" my bino's up towards the Belt something caught my eye, I retraced my path, and gasped as Orion's Nebula sat there staring straight back at me...for a second I considered waking the wife up just so I could retrive my tripod from the bedroom, but decided against it as I'd like to at least see the year out.

Anyone who has held a pair of 20x80's will know what happened next.

That's right, first the arms start to shake, then you bend your knees as if that will somehow stop your arms from shaking, then you lean against anything solid, all the time keeping (or trying too) the bino's up to your eyes. It's not long before you're in the fetal position making tiny whimpering sounds as every last ounce of strength drains from you.

And as I dragged my ravaged body back into the house, completely spent...I had the biggest grin on my face I'd had all year...I saw Orion's Nebula...and it was WOW!

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It sure is a wow! moment.

Every first time of the year this object always blows me away.

Every year I know what to expect, but, BANG! And I'm dumbstruck.:icon_salut:

Awesome.

Steve

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I've been looking at Orion's Belt since I was a kid, I assumed it was just three stars and that was it. I love being wrong.

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The 1st glimpse of M42 is a great experience !

Just wait until you see it with a scope !

I think the nebula is to be found in what's termed the "sword" of Orion - this does look to the naked eye like 3 star groupings that form a line downwards and at an angle from the 3 belt stars.

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I originally was going to get a scope, but after reading on here that it was better to start with bino's i went that way. Soooo glad I did, if i'd had a scope I would not have taken it outside at that time of morning and would not have got my WOW moment.

I will be asking santa for a scope next year though :0)

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I've read alot on here about other people's WOW's (Is that even a word? lol) but thought it was just over reaction...not any more. I'm hooked!!!

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had the same :icon_salut: moment a few weeks back but with the scope at the end of a long session.

Tonight is the first time I've managed to get some viewing time for a while and it's all set up and ready waiting for it to clear my neighbours tree :)

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Great post. I take it you mean the sword bit? That does look great, even through bog standard binos like my 7x50's.

The Horsey Head bit which is next to Alnitak is probably better with a scope, though.

Orion is no doubt my favourite constellation.

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The Horsey Head bit which is next to Alnitak is probably better with a scope, though...

Very tough object to see visually though. Needs a decent scope aperture, some appropriate filtering (Hydrogen Beta I think) and very transparent skies to spot it.

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Very tough object to see visually though. Needs a decent scope aperture, some appropriate filtering (Hydrogen Beta I think) and very transparent skies to spot it.

I've not seen it myself yet. I will have to look into those filters if I want to get a good look.

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Orion is my fave as well, had a great view with binos last night as it was very clear and crisp, it looks so impressive every time I look, I even muttered 'goodnight' when I called it a night yesterday! It's like an old friend now, sad I know!

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And to add to the fun look for the two closish doubles below and right of the bottom star in the belt in your 20x 80's...

Enjoy

Mark

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To solve the tripod issue Neil, it's now in the shed, that way it's right where i need it all the time. Ive made an early new years resolution, it's to NOT run out and buy the first scope i see. I think i know what i want, but it will meen saving for a while. That way by the time i get one, i'll have learnt a bit more and it wont be a waste of money.

When i first spotted the Nebula i didn't have a clue what it was, i was still awestruck...just didn't know what i was getting all silly about. I grabbed the book i got at the same time as the bino's, Nightwatch 4th edition by Terence Dickinson (saw it recomended on here before i joined) that's when i actually "saw" what i was looking at...it's also when awestruck became my WOW moment.

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i saw it for the first time on the 17th with my now old scope (just got an OO 6" reflector).

and it is an wonderfull sight i cant wait to see it with my new scope.

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