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Cornucopia of delights !

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Clear sky , setting crescent Moon and Patbloke ( Pat ) on his way with great humour , enthusiasm and best of all a shiny Equinox 120. First serious light with my Eq6 pro and a quick start with Pegasus binaries.

We gave Mars several shots , but later the pure clean disc of Uranus ruled the sky. Seeing and contrast improved greatly after midnight and gave some awesome views. M35 , later in the south gave a beautiful contrasty view with a 22mm LVW. We went for carbon stars , open clusters and planetary nebulae with a few oddities , all observable from the edge of town.

Carbon stars . VX Andromedae , WZ Cass. ,RV Monocerotis and Hind's Crimson in Lepus were stunning. I gave included details below. Very well worth sorting out.

Pegasus. M15 resolved . Andromeda . High power view of the "Blue Snowball", NGC 7662. This lead us onto the Cygnus planetary nebulae, the very bright NGC 7027 (+9). The elusive "Blue Flash" NGC 6905. We had different focussing and even before getting close to the ep the " blinking planetary" NGC 6826, was flashing wildly way out of focus. Open clusters here included NGC 6811 ("Hole in the cluster"), NGC 6910 "rocking horse " and the powdered glass of NGC6819.

Cassiopeia. Never get tired of the triple iota.Onto the Pacman, NGC 281 with signs of nebulosity and the easy central triple , Burnham 1.

Double cluster, M33 ( just there !) , Auriga clusters including awesome M37, NGC 2281, 1893,2281 and the asterism NGC 1790. Prize here was the gorgeous fish like NGC 2240 .

Gemini . Gave M35. Mekbuda (SAO 79032), gave a wide view with a hidden third element.Wasat opened up as surprisingly did Kappa at the shoulder of Pollux ( drawn).

Taurus. M1 (just there) NGC 1758 and the poorer NGC 1647.

Monoceros. NGC 2301 ("Hagrid's dragon"), NGC 2353 ("Avery's Island ") and the lovely M50.

Orion. 4 stars to Sigma Orionis, but no E or F in the Trap..Led us down to M41 in CaMa.

Lynx. Just a spark of NGC 2419.  Leo . Gave a wide Regulus and a lovely view of Algieba.NGC7339 was on view. Leo Minor gave the yellow and blue of Σ 1374 (SAO 61629). Up to UMa and a view of 57 UMa (great contrast in magnitudes, SAO 62572).

Some areas of the sky stopped us stunned with clarity and seeing , other areas were bubbling. Cloud thickened and passed to the south and north. We spent hours in a clear area surrounded by cloud. No fine Optics will get you through bubbling stars , the closest nearly clacking together. We focussed and waited for the views to come.

Nothing can prepare you for horrendous dew when the temperature fell. The dew strip had been gently on from kickoff , that worked. The mount was singing its "swish swish swish" tracking tune. Superb night.

Great company , questions and dubious answers and the time just expanded ! Mind you if anyone asks me to show them "Bode's" again ,( one mate is obsessed), I'm off, 

Clear skies ! Nick.IMG_6470.thumb.JPG.409f602843fccd77246b89e4c3f60c70.JPGIMG_6471.thumb.JPG.bc5c243cd095934ab029564900f6204e.JPGIMG_6472.thumb.JPG.ba24f55a7576fa68a67e689488ccfb31.JPGIMG_6473.thumb.JPG.5b36192d1c9c6c59fde2d654d88bed88.JPG

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Twas indeed one of those great nights! Amazed how you remember the targets to write up the reports at 5 in the morning...

It was definitely a night for Clusters... The EQ6Pro is a cracking addition to your armoury Nick! 

For everyone - Two things to remember when you plan observing sessions: One - that no matter how much you've spent on Gucci equipment you are totally at the mercy of the seeing Gods! Yes great equipment will maximise your opportunity to see wonderful objects when the seeing is good, but even the highest grade glass can't break through cloud or bad seeing (and we had some top of the range equipment in that session)   Two - is just how quickly it can all change... Last night we had it bright, dark, warm, cold, dry, damp and windy (Yes very windy at times ) ? Trick is have great company with you for those moments of 'not so clear times' The 'social' is as important as the mission! 

Yes I will invest in a new head torch Nick.... The research begins yet again! It's finding that balance between being so dim as not to blind you on the observing throne, and being bright enough to actually see!

The Winter is coming!!!!

Edited by Patbloke
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I wonder who keeps asking about "Bodes" AHEM. 

Great report and drawings again, I am going to write the ones down I know I haven't got.

Cloud and rain here started getting clear about 12 but was still wispy cloud about, the stars were twinkling like mad, I just didn't want set up for horrible views I would be disappointed with.


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6 minutes ago, estwing said:

Super stuff guys ...what a list!...sounds like you are in love with that 120 Nick, something from Santa perhaps?...clear skies!

Every visit he kindly offers me temporary storage space for it in his shed....  

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