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One of those nights...


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So, I''ve just started my 18 day shift break and we're at our 5* mansion in rural Cumbrishire.

This is the view to the north east from our decking.

Absolutely spectacular sky.

But... With the moon and time of year I don't expect too much :(

Hope I'm wrong.

Hope you guys have a good night!

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Well, I got some stargazing done last night.

My first scan with the bins was at about 11.30. Still a very bright northerly horizon and the Moon was low in the west being trailed by Mars and Spica.

That grouping was made a good starting point to try and find the pairing of Vesta and Ceres. There was a bit of cloud knocking around by then which was spreading as the night went on.

I could find the 6 and 7th maginitute stars that I'd hoped to hop from but no sign of the asteroids. Too light, too much cloud and by now very low on the horizon.

This also marked my first view of Saturn with optical aid this season. Pity it was only 10x50's. It was tsill nice to say "Hi!"

My best sky was to the south which is a dark horizon from this site.

Antares and it's cohorts were dominant low over the rise of the distant fells. With my aging eyes the colours of the stars aren't so apparent as they once were. At least Antares still stands out from the crowd.

Further round to the South Sagittarius was culminating.  A slow scan with the bins picked out lots of stars but only one fuzzy. I don't know this part of the sky very well. It's obliterated by light pollution back home and barely rises from Cumbria.

I had to consult Sky Safari to identify my fuzzy friend. I was slightly surprised to find it was M8. How many years of stargazing and I've missed this big  bright fuzzy??!!

Not spectacular in the bins and a less than dark sky but, as a first, it was real nice to see.

That was about it for me. The sky was almost clouded out by 1am. 

Hope to do it again soon.

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Nice setting. Hope you enjoy your break.

Cheers.

Sadly the MD has work tomorrow so we're heading back home today.

Back on Thursday though :)

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Looks a lovely site Paul, you should have some great observing nights once we get to the darker skies.

Good luck and enjoy.

Yes it's a good site.

Penrith, 5 miles to the north, has gotten brighter in the 10 years we've had a pitch there and can be a nuisance when looking north.

Even so it's 15 billion times better than my home sky.

There are plans to take Ye Olde Fullerscope up there permanently but storage in the humble hovel is er...limited!

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