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Long time lurker, hello all

 

Got the bug bad. In theory I love astronomy, BUT I also like to sleep at night, 10 o'clock being a late night.

 

Before I spend thousands of dollars, do you have to be a dedicated night owl to really enjoy the hobby?

 

Thanks....Don

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Winter offers some earlyish viewing opportunities.

If you want to be a visual observer, then you need the night time for the rest of the year. You could get away with being a DSO imager if you can get your target all lined up and then go to bed for the rest of the night, but the practice to get that right might leave you a little tired to start with!

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Ive had 20 minute sessions and ive had 16 hr sessions. Only you can decide how long you want to spend observing. It depends on  the time of year and how dark it is at any given time.

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If you get interested in solar observation, then problem solved! :) Alternatively, what about the weekend?

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Hello and a warm welcome to the SGL. In winter you manage 3 or 4 hours and still be in bed early.

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There are those that enjoy long sessions and those that are more casual observers i suspect. I'm more casual and fit in sessions around whether i have to work in the morning and of course the time of the year. Autumn and winter here are great for early evening viewing and you can save your longer sessions for the weekend. I regulalry go out for just a couple of hours.

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Hello & welcome to SGL - it's nice to have you aboard!

To your question: No, you don't need to be a nocturnal creature. But you MAY well become one!

You never know where the road goes - until you arrive!

Clear skies,

Dave

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2 hours ago, KansasDon said:

Got the bug bad. In theory I love astronomy, BUT I also like to sleep at night, 10 o'clock being a late night.

Good, we need early morning observers as much as late night ones. Welcome to the SGL.  :hello:

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Cool, good insights, thanks. I see where I can do winter evenings and pre-dawn mornings easily enough, the wife already thinks I'm crazy.

 

Thanks all for the warm welcome, wonderful site.

 

...Don

 

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Hi.

I also love to sleep. But if I sit outside and I'm hunting DSOs, then it is very tempting to continue and sit much longer than is good for me. But I haven't done any all-nighters.

Here in Norway the night starts early in autumn and winter and then I just observe 1 - 3 hours at night. The 3 hours observations happens most often in the weekend but sometimes on a weekday, as clear skies cannot be planned to fall in a weekend. The coming months I think I can relax and sleep, because the skies here in the north won't become astronomically dark.

Are you a morning bird? Early morning observations can be nice. The seeing is often quite good.

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I was still a racing cyclist when I started and was always whacked after work and training. I have fallen asleep in a restaurant while eating, I've fallen asleep at parties with my head against the bass speaker which made it bounce in time with the beat... so my friends thought it hysterical that I intended to stay up stargazing. You just get used to it. Honestly, if I could do it anyone could.

Olly

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Start with a small refractor on a alt/az mount perhaps that can be setup in minutes so you're not spending much time on setup/breakdown that goes with larger scopes.  See how you go!

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19 hours ago, KansasDon said:

Long time lurker, hello all

 

Got the bug bad. In theory I love astronomy, BUT I also like to sleep at night, 10 o'clock being a late night.

 

Before I spend thousands of dollars, do you have to be a dedicated night owl to really enjoy the hobby?

 

Thanks....Don

Welcome to SGL. Before you spend thousands of dollars, try naked eye or binocular viewing - these offer some of the most spectacular views you can get. Find out how dark your yard really is - you might find you need to drive to reach a  truly dark sky (ideally you want to see the Milky Way easily). Or maybe you'd rather look at Moon and planets, in which case a dark sky isn't necessary. As you're in NE Kansas you won't have the very long winter nights we get at more northerly latitudes such as UK, but you do have the advantage of dark summer nighs while we northern Brits languish in all-night twilight. If you like to be in bed early then set your alarm for pre-dawn viewing and just hope it's a clear sky when you wake up. If you really get bitten by the bug then you'll find your sleep habits changing... And if not, there's always the Sun to look at (by projection or using a  safe filter).

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20 hours ago, KansasDon said:

Got the bug bad. In theory I love astronomy, BUT I also like to sleep at night, 10 o'clock being a late night.

 

I struggle with late nights too.   By 10:30 pm I have generally had enough.   It's an age thing in my case.

Don't like mornings either.    But tomorrow morning I will be getting up at 3:30 am to see Saturn and Mars through a gap in the trees.  It will be first time with these two through my current scope.    Will bag some glob clusters too.

I'll hate getting up so early but I'll hate myself even more if I don't!

Whether you stay up late or not, have fun :)

 

Edited by Riemann

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Great topic Don, and welcome to SGL.

I also struggle badly with late nights, my body clock is the same as you and by 10.00pm I usually want to be in bed.  However, I also want to observe so I rationalise it as if I was going out to a party - in order to have the evening fun I have to be prepared for tiredness the following couple of days so I need to adjust my attitude/schedule accordingly.  I am fortunate that I'm retired and can generally do that . . .

Jayne

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Must admit I've found that having an early sleep and then observing in the early hours of the morning is good. As there are no lights from the neighbours and few if any car headlights at that time.

I normally do a couple of hours and then head back to bed.

It's just unfortunate local streetlights stay on all night. :(

Andy.

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If the seeing looks like it's going to be good, I'll sometimes have a nap on the sofa when I get home from work, which allows me to stay up past midnight.  As long as the total hours sleep adds up to 6 per night, then I'm usually OK.

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Don, welcome to the lounge.  That's a great question as I too like to be in bed early.  But seeing the responses I'm encouraged to make more effort to stay out longer.  Although I must admit that I wish I could aford to fully automate the observatory so that I could set an imaging run going and then go to bed.

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bring a phone or a computer with you and when you are not trying to look for something or your taking photos and just waiting use the electronic, also cofee and red bull really help.

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On 30/03/2016 at 23:55, Dave In Vermont said:

No, you don't need to be a nocturnal creature. But you MAY well become one

So true!

Astronomers enjoy there interest at so many different levels, including Solar astronomy during the day. I have to say during the summer months when the only darkish skies are between 11-4 you have little choice, the noctilucent clouds are well worth being up all night for.

The long winter nights though when you can have 5-6 hour session and still be in bed at 10pm are much better.

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I can now confirm that 1 night sleeping short will do no harm. I am functioning quite well. I observed to 1 o'clock (in nocturnal twilight as someone called it in a post above). When I went to bed I couldn't sleep for hours because my legs were so cold. I hadn't realised that it would become so cold, as I started out without gloves and nice warm fingers. The tiredness will probably hit around dinner time tonight. And we have blue skies at the moment, so tonight might be a new observing session. It is all voluntarily of course. You can also ignore it and go to bed. No one will blame you.

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