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Lure of the early hours !


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Lovely calm early hours , cold came in from the north will a few high clouds , but they cleared.

So much on view , Gemini giving lovely views of M35, Wasat and the blue "Eskimo nebula" NGC 2392. Taurus showed a good M1 with open clusters.

I was after the elusive third element to 14 Aurigae , it took ages and several visits before the faint companion popped out. M37 looked just stunning , filling the fov at x150. Lynx gave the "Galactic Wanderer ", NGC 2419  . Just follow the hook of stars down to find a glimmer of the most distant observable target in our galaxy , some 300,000 light years from the centre.

Orion was high , nice meteor shot out of there ,but don't overlook Monoceros. Beta giving a most astounding bright triple opening  up at x100. Up to the winged open cluster of "Hagrid's Dragon", NGC 2301 filling the fov at x150. The "Christmas tree" cluster in NGC 2264 and what a difference putting in an Oiii filter makes . The whole area is just fluffy nebulosity. Didn't do much for NGC 2244.

Down to Lepus catching the main stars by eye,and "Hind's Crimson" (SAO 150058) , the great colour was there , but the star is quite dim at the moment. IC 418 , the "Spirograph " planetary nebula blinked well.

Over to Eridanus and a great view of Keid (SAO 131063). This gives a bright star with twin companions. Colours here are orange yellow and blues.

Passing the nearby oak , Uranus gave a lovely bright greenish blue disc, just about there by eye. I missed Neptune which has set.

Earlier I tried for comet ASSASN in Camelopardalis and later C 24P/Schaumasse below Leo. It would be nice to think that the faint non stellar puffs were them, but it's always exciting to catch these welcome visitors .

Don't forget  M44  ( Praesepe ) and just below , the small stunning M67. A lovely session with plenty of challenges , high moisture descending as dripping dew . I put a 25mm ep in my trouser pocket as eps soon fog over and it's good to have something to look through !

Hoping that some clear skies comes your way , old Nick.

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Sky cleared about 2 am here unfortunately I`m coming down with lurgy  could not get warm, now aching and bad throat so gave it amiss first night in ages and I had a observing list. Great report Nick as usual now I wish I had gone out.

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Ta, I always find time for Keid, the companions are clearly visible , one being a red dwarf and the other being a white dwarf. NGC 2419 is fascinating with regards to its location and the small population of globular clusters that we have . Ancient and similarly packed and the remnants of an early universal clear out ! The age of these clusters never fails to astound ,

clear skies ! Nick.

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Nice report.  My wife wakened my at  2am.  She had noticed it was crystal clear, despite raining virtually all day (feels like all week). 

I was out for a few hours with only one cloud drift about 4am.   Viewing restricted to NW - E due to buildings and street light.

Beautiful views of Messier 81 and 82 framed with the 26mm eyepiece and best detail with the 12.4mm eyepiece.  Sought out the Cats Eye Nebula this was bright enough to take a x2 Barlow 15mm - couldn't make out much structure though.

Swung past M31 and M32 stunning, as always, to pick up the Pinwheel Galaxy.  I have seen this from dark sky sites but this is a first for me from my back garden.  Normally I know I have star hopped to the right location but can just see orange muck.  Nebulosity and some arm structure evident.

Finished off with a tour of the Double Cluster, M42, the Plaides and Hyades before dew closed play.

Unexpectedly good night and fortunately no work to get up to... so slept late.  Hoping to get out to a dark sky site tonight and with a  better target list.

John

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Lovely session, impressive selection of targets, doing the right thing starting in the small hours. Was a really nice evening and sunny day here, but a day at work so a good read up.

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Very well written and organized, a guided tour of a great night under the stars.  For those of us of a more mature age, this will make a fine guide for public outreach three or four months from now.  Well done!

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7 hours ago, cotterless45 said:

Grab these two ! Great discs and colours ,Nick.IMG_5267.thumb.PNG.f87996c466229d407227f88884efc059.PNG

Managed to get Uranus tonight but Neptune just too low.  The thrill of the chase rewarded by a lovely blue green disc! Sadly the wind was getting up and my dob was  behaving like a weather vane so had to concede and retreat to the nearby pub.

Oh well!

John

John

 

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