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Observing from St Osyth.


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Well I've just returned home from our holiday in St Osyth and had two nights that were clear enough for viewing. The first night I took the chance to take some images but the second night was the better of the two which I spent viewing only.

The site was right on the coast so LP was at an absolute minimum and the zenith was very dark indeed.

On the second evening we more or less just stuck our heads out of the door on the off chance that the previous days bad weather had blown over and stepped out into an absolute feast of starry night views.

After about half an hour or so in the direction of Cygnus I was able to see for the first time, the milky way. It was so clear that I was able to make out dark bands in between aswell. It was a breath taking spectacle and I spent ages following it.

I spent most of the night just looking by eye but my wife joined me after a couple of hours and asked to see M31.

I duly pointed my WO66 in the right direction, looked through the EP and after one sweep to the left, there it was......I chuckled to myself and Vicky called my a jammy git, but I had found it in approx 10 seconds without goto......

I've never seen any stars in the Great Square of Pegasus when viewing from home but at St Osyth I was able to see several.

Vicky was satellite hunting and found about 8. We also found one that tracked through Cygnus but then disappeared. I think we saw 3 Perseid's aswell during the night but I didn't take note of where we saw them in the sky.

Cassiopeia looked absolutely amazing and was surrounded by lots of lower magnitude stars, again something I'm not used to.

Ursa Major was very bright and the "saucepan" was very obvious just above the roof line of our caravan.

All in all was a fantastic couple of nights and I have some wide field shots that I will post in the imaging section once I've finished playing with them.

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Sounds like a terrific time Simon - I'm really pleased the mount performed well. Dunno if you worked it out yet but you can store user defined objects in a small database. So if you want to revisit an object for someone else to see it's available at the touch of a button.

Can't wait to see the pics :)

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Excellent report. :) I've heard of people who literally get lost in the sky at star parties because of the extra stellar congestion that's present. I'm curious about something... you said "able to see for the first time, the milky way." Was that the very first time you've ever seen it, or did you mean that particular night?

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It was the very first time I had ever seen it, and boy did it blow me away. It was only faint but I could deffinitely make out shapes and dark patches.

I've just been talking to my wife about that evening again and she said I did a fairly good impression of David Tennants "Doctor Who" and looked like a 35 year old child bouncing around like it was Christmas morning pointing this way and that.

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Sounds like a great time was had. I remember the first time I saw the Milky Way several years ago at a camp site we frequent at Hinderwell north of Whitby.

http://www.serenitycaravanpark.co.uk/website/ Its only by seeing it in all its glory that you realise just how bad (and how wasteful) light pollution is in our towns.

I took my first scope up there 4 weeks ago hoping for great things but was plagued with cloud, first time in 5 visits, I can certainly recommend it for gazing as they operate a strict policy of peace and quiet after 11pm.

Edited by Polar Bear
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I grew up in north west england, between liverpool and manchester and then moved to london followed by north kent. I have never seen the milky way, I'm jealous.

Sounds like you had a great holiday.

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So happy to here you finally see it my first time was last year September 12th

I Remember it so well, on my birthday and a star party East Sussex it's on again on 4 5 6 September I think, I have spent lots of holiday down ST Osyth when I was kid

so clear skies



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Thanks all, and I'm afraid now that I have been told what I looked like on that eventful night I will be trying my hardest not to repeat my DW performance. So glad she didn't think to video it on her phone.....

It was an incredible sight, and it really does hit home how bad the LP has got. Where I live I only really have views E,S and W and then only from about 40 degrees, the joy of living on a hill, and I see so few stars on a clear night. The site we were at offered a view so completely different, there were 10 times as many stars on show if not more.

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