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I'm embarrassed to ask this as I'm sure it will be obvious to everyone except me :-(

I was out last night with the Dob (first time for ages... And a beautiful night it was too!) and around 2.15 I noticed a bright patch of stars rise above the treeline/horizon, roughly in the NE. I could not identify much else around this patch (ie the rest of a constellation).

Through 10x50 binoculars this patch of light was a beautiful jewelled nest of bright stars ... And actually it looked better and more condensed through the 10x50s than through the wide 34mm and the Dob, which showed only a portion of this lovely conglonerayion.

So what did I see? I don't have access at the mo to Stellarium to run back what this was. I've looked on star charts and my planisphere but, to my shame, I just can't work it out! Was it a bit of Pisces rising? Or Taurus (the Hyades)?

I'll kick myself when someone tells me!

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Does this help?

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I'm guessing it was the Pleiades, or possibly Taurus as you suggested.

Stu

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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That looks like it... Thanks. I just didn't expect the Pleiades/Taurus to be that low on the horizon there ... In my mind I think of them being always higher in the sky!

Pretty dumb I guess.

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I guessed the Pleiades, but then I thought "Naaaah, it can't be."

Can you give us a rough sketch of how the stars were arranged?

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Alcyone is the brightest one here. It'll continue to rise as autumn arrives, hurrah !post-6974-0-37739100-1406440887.jpg

Nick.

Edited by cotterless45
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I was out at the same time and noticed on Stellarium that Pleiades had just risen on the eastern horizon but I couldn't get to it due to the trees at the bottom of our garden.

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Strange that if they had been where I would have expected them I would have recognised them as the Pleiades straight away but because they were just rising above the horizon I was confused.

There is something dramatic about the horizon. I remember seeing the top half of Orion rising above the E horizon once and it seemed oddly spectacular (to me anyway).

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An afterthought:

Today, the Pleiades culminated at roughly 0815 Local time.

Subtracting 6 hours gives around 0215, which is a pretty good fit with the time mentioned by the OP.

I'm convinced. 

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I've had exactly the same feeling before. When you stay up so late that the winter constellations start to show it can be a little confusing. The Pleiades rising looks a little strange until you realise what it is

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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My first thought was also the Seven Sisters, but its the height of summer and i am not a summer observer so i dont know if they are up or not. If they are, they will be very low down to the NE.

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I would most definitely say it was the Pleiades ,I watched them rise on Tuesday night / Wednesday morning while out looking for Delta Aquarids , Autumn's on its way !

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Yeah as said prob the sisters, first sign of dark nights returning

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True... I don't feel as dumb now!

Thanks everyone for the considered replies.

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