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Ccolvin968

2017 Observing (or lack thereof)

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So this is my first time back on the forum in a while now, so it's good to be back.

I won't lie, 2017 has been an absolutely desolate year for observing for me.

This year, I've been out maybe four or five times, and two of those were naked eye observing. One was for the Perseid Meteor shower, that for my location peaked at 9/hr. I'm hoping that September through December can be more productive, but because of the cold temps on the way, it makes it tough. Even though 2017 has been a complete bust for me, it makes me want to get out more and more.

I have already been putting my 2018 list together for things I absolutely need/want to see next year. 3C273 is my number one target at the moment. Another goal, although not an object in the sky, but I am also joining my astronomy club here in Minnesota. It'll be great to go to the star parties that they have and get to meet other people who have the same interests as I do. My wife and relatives could care less about space/astronomy. :( Along with that, I also got a new Meade Series 5000 UWA 20mm for Christmas that I never got to actually try out. But it compliments my Meade UWA 14mm and 8.8mm, so nowhere to go but up from there, right?

What are all of you looking forward to in 2018? Anything specific? Anything you're hoping for?

Clear skies!

 

 

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I only got my telescope last Christmas so there was a few things I missed out on earlier in the year due. I'm keen to see some galaxies in Virgo and the Ghost of Jupiter planetary nebula (NGC 3242). I think Mars is supposed to be in a slightly better position next year so that's high up on the list too

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1 hour ago, Littleguy80 said:

I only got my telescope last Christmas so there was a few things I missed out on earlier in the year due. I'm keen to see some galaxies in Virgo and the Ghost of Jupiter planetary nebula (NGC 3242). I think Mars is supposed to be in a slightly better position next year so that's high up on the list too

The Virgo cluster is great fun - basically point the telescope in that region of sky and there'll be a galaxy in the FOV. Although Mars will be at its closest for about 15 years next year, at opposition it will be at something like -25 declination so not a great position!

I'm looking forward to the close approach of comet 46P/Wirtanen in December 2018 - should be 3rd or 4th magnitude and a very nice binocular object, and we haven't had any comets that bright for a while.

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I rarely do much across the summer as the mosquitoes like to eat me and falling short of swimming in repletant they bite me throught my clothes. Now the evenings are cooling off a bit everything gets better even the sky is not so wobbley. I do so enjoy the Scorpious area but have found it is better staying up late than going out now and looking.

Alan

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I think I'm in the same boat - start of the year was rubbish and I didn't get out at all until end of March. Managed 2 consecutive weekends at the end of March/start or April! Then nothing until August where I've managed to get 2 short sessions (1.5 hours) and 1 longer (3 hours).

I've recently purchased some new kit (which explains the weather) so I'm looking forward to having some good sessions over the coming months. Just got to be patient....which I'm terrible at!

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There are another 3.5 months of this year left yet :D

Plenty of observing opportunities to come: star party in Nov, astronomy club starts again in a couple of weeks - chance to show a few new members around the sky, and I'm sure there will be another couple of dark sky evenings  before the year is out. 

then we can start thinking about next year :headbang:

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I agree with Mr Star ^^^^^^^^

Although, I tend to view astro years as being aligned with school years. Starts now!!!

Goals for the coming year?

1/ Resist Temptation - Stick to my £250 (ish) astro gear budget (was £200, but accidentally spent £50 on a new astro thingy earlier.....)

2/ Record my observations ALL year this time.

3/ More dark sky trips.

4/ Observe Stephan's Quintet.

5/ Observe the elusive HH.

6/ Get stuck into the Herschel 400.

7/ Jupiter Moon transits. Haven't observed a good one all year!

That should keep me busy.

Paul

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7 minutes ago, Paul73 said:

I agree with Mr Star ^^^^^^^^

Although, I tend to view astro years as being aligned with school years. Starts now!!!

Goals for the coming year?

1/ Resist Temptation - Stick to my £250 (ish) astro gear budget (was £200, but accidentally spent £50 on a new astro thingy earlier.....)

2/ Record my observations ALL year this time.

3/ More dark sky trips.

4/ Observe Stephan's Quintet.

5/ Observe the elusive HH.

6/ Get stuck into the Herschel 400.

7/ Jupiter Moon transits. Haven't observed a good one all year!

That should keep me busy.

Paul

Wow, this post resonates with me. I've been thinking about a smaller, portable set up I can sling on my back but like you, have to resist tempation. Might invest in a UHC filter, tho'...

I could copy and paste this straight into my astro-goals list! :D

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I'm just getting back into astronomy after a break so I've joined an Astro club (first meeting this Saturday) and want to get out more to dark sites.

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Jan- April I was to busy with other stuff so never really had chance. Bought a AZ-GOTO and a new 32mm EP for my xmas 2017 pressie and so managed some good decent sessions both in the garden and a dark site in April - June.

Dont really bother July/ August as the sky never really goes dark and because of my location, light pol can be an issue.

Speaking of Light pol, we now have the infamous and most annoying Blackpool Illuminations on so any chance I will get will be restricted to double stars, not a bad thing, I do enjoy observing these a lot.

Hopefully come November when they turn them pesky lights off and the holiday makers have all gone I can enjoy better sessions, for me Autumn/ Winter is the best time anyway.

 

 

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