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Orange Haze

Big gaps between observations.....

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So I have just got my Dob back out of storage after having the house done up earlier this year. In all, it has been 18 months since I last used it! In fact its been longer than that since I last visited SGL. I have found over the years that astronomy is a topic that I am continually fascinated by, but the actual observing seems to come in phases, stretches of good observing followed by months of not touching the scope. I am almost ashamed..... I can't be alone in this, do others find the same? What's the record for time between using the scope?! Anyway, now the Dob is back and I have the itch again, I am just waiting for the next clear sky...........

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I can relate to your experience, so you are definitely not alone. A period of 12 months is certainly not unknown for me. Just enjoy the times when you are motivated and don't beat yourself up for the other times. It is a hobby after all. 

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Too true, although it seems that from the moment i picked my scope up the weather took a decided turn for the worse. Curse of the new scope (of sorts)...

 

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I sometimes find my enthusiasm wanes when I can't observe for weeks at a time due to the weather. Although I use Stallarium to brush up my knowledge of the heavens, and build all sorts of extras for the telescope, there's a limit to how much of that I want to do.

Eric.

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I looked at Jupiter, Mars, Uranus and the Moon earlier this week - prior to that it was 5 months ago that I used a telescope.

Over the last 32 years I have dipped in and out of astronomy - it is definitely a hobby that you can come back to after a while and still enjoy it.

Edited by dweller25

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In the course of 47 years of observing, there were periods, when I logged just five, seven or ten observations in one year (due mostly to localisation and work commitments). During the last years (- the joys of retirement), my number of observations has steadily increased, and this year, for the first time, reached a three-digit number a few days ago. So don't worry - it's a lifetime hobby, that you can always take up again after a break. The stars will still be waiting for you.

Stephan

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Yep, no need to beat yourself up if you don't get out there. I observe whenever is convenient, when I feel like it and when the sky co-operates!

I've never been of the 'must observe x times a week or month' way of thinking, that just puts too much pressure on. In my early days I used to go quite long periods, up to 6 months without observing, but that has gone away now, more recently because SGL keeps me engaged with the hobby much more.

Do what you enjoy, that's what it's about. Good that you are getting back into it now.

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I've only been doing this for a few years but when you put together the weather and having the varoius responsibilities of being middle aged I can often go a month or more with no chance to observe and then make the most of the opportunities when they arise.

I ve not yet had a sabbatical through losing my enthusiasm but I know from other hobbies that I have been into for well over 20yrs that sometimes I will most likely  step back from it from time to time over the years, but never give it up.

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Nice to know I am in good company. At least I have chosen to get back in to my hobby during the depth of winter, assuming the cloud clears at some point. Been too long since I spied M42! And there is no way I would part with my dear Dob, even if I was in an observing drought...

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Much of my 'stargazing' time happens to take place on here, in conversation with, reading, interacting. Another proportion of time is spent in research, planning, developing and (oh dear) buying. Periods dedicated to participation fluctuate, ebb and flow, dependent on familiar factors. Lengthy periods of inactivity, such as through the summer months, can, when there is an opportunity to get out again, initially create a need towards familiarising or initiating a renewed awareness with equipment and the sky. Quite recently I have been fortunate to have enjoyed a successive quite extensive period of successful trips to dark sky locations, combined with some observation sessions based at home or close to home. This has been unusual as trips to dark sky locations in particular can often involve a monthly if I am lucky, or more so, two month time gaps. To fall back onto other interests is necessary.     

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I have also returned after a lengthy absence as a result of a friend who had caught the bug and wanted to be shown the ropes. He reawakened my dormant interest to such an extent that I actually collimated my telescope after having owned it for ten years! For me the frustration is with the weather. Now that I'm back with a vengeance I then discover that there are so few observing opportunities between the weather and work commitments. 

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Ive done no observing since early 2016. Weather has been part of the reason, but also my health went down hill for a few months and then my mothers health took a nose dive.

Edited by LukeSkywatcher

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