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EQ6 out of action turned out to be an advantage!


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The EQ6 is out of action at the moment: I would normally set up my scope in the back garden with its limited view of the southern sky and be generally happy with the pretty good skies I have anyway. As tonight was a clear night I thought I would put my lightweight 102ED and AZ mount plus a few bits and pieces in the car and drive the massive 200 yds over to the village playing field for some lovely clear views of a part of the sky I don't usually see; what a treat. The village hall was not in use so no light from that, just dark skies almost to the horizon! Wow, why haven't I done this before? My first target was M50 in Monoceros, about one third distance from Sirius to Procyon, then on to M41, another open cluster, this one just below Sirius in Canis Major; then I found M47 in Puppis: that was three new Messiers for me! I then went to more familiar territory, M44 The Beehive Cluster; it looked great through binoculars, why hadn't I tried that before?? M67 was a little trickier, but a rewarding find, an open cluster with a definate nebulosity. I was very cold by now, I took a quick look at Jupiter and three visible moons, and then I finished off with Comet Lovejoy, now very high in the sky and easily found following a line from Aldebaran through The Pleiades and carry on a similar distance. So I may not have had my beloved EQ6 Mount, but for me that turned into an advantage

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