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brantuk

Kelling Heath (Spring 2011) Chat Thread

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Hi All

I usually start this thread in early March but decided to do it earlier this time as we've had a lot of recent enquires from the mass influx of newbies and "likely" star party goers this year. It's a useful place to centralise everything.

Also many people can't make it to SGL6 for one reason or another so it's a good alternative if you're too far from Hereford.

Please feel free to use the thread for general chat, questions, and info about this great event. Lets hear who's going, which pitch you're on, what kit are you taking, what objects you recommend, and any other stuff you'd like to ask or contibute.

To kick it off: Kelling is a very nice campsite in a protected countryside area with interesting flaura and fauna, wildlife, and heathland walks. The event promises three huge fields filled with all sorts of telescopes and equipment to drool over, and if you're friendly with the campers, you may even get an offer to look through some of them.

Being a largely flat and clear area, the skies tend to be very dark and stunning. There will be trade stands on the main weekend and entry is free to day visitors so do come and look around even if you aren't camping.

Here's a couple of links to get you going:

Kelling Heath Holiday Park - Caravan & Camping Site, North Norfolk UK

Spring Star Party

Update: List of traders attending the main weekend and location of information tent and talks here: http://www.starparty.org/

I'll be on Red T302 so do drop by and say hi if you do make it.

Enjoy ;)

Please Note: This event is not organised by SGL so this thread is purely for SGL'ers to get to know who's who, who's going and meet up old friends, or make new ones.

Edited by brantuk

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Couple of "etiquette" pointers for anyone new to star parties:

White or coloured light spoils "dark adapted" eyes, and ruins images.

So if turning up after dark it's allways best to park the car in the car park and switch off lights, then walk down to the scope fields which will be totally blacked out.

Bring only dim red light torches. You can modify a normal torch by putting a red bulb in, or paint over the front end with red nail varnish, or fix red cellophane (eg sweet wrapper) over the front of it with an elastic band.

Laser pointers are usually disallowed at star parties

Try not to disturb the pitches in the morning - astronomers who've been up till 3am or 4am observing/imaging/drawing will be having a good lie in.

Some equipment takes a long time to set up precisely (especially for imaging). So please don't touch equipment unless specifically invited to, even during the day.

At night just wait patiently untill invited to "have a look", it sometimes takes a short while to find an object for you.

Try not to stamp feet around imaging setups when cold. Carefully aligned photography setups will "feel" the ground vibrations and long exposure images will be ruined.

Astronomers will greatly appreciate observation of those few items, and it will make your visit all the more interesting, pleasurable, and friendly. :)

Edited by brantuk

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Hi Brantuk, it looks like I won`t have far to walk to say hello to you again this spring. Me and Tony (he was with me last year) have got T303 and T304 booked.

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Ahhh... so it was you who pinched our pitch Phil lol. We had 304 last Autumn. Good to cya again mate and looking forward to having great neighbours :)

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Hi Brantuk,

I am looking forward to going to Kelling heard lots of good things about it I am on Red T426. I will have the caravan with me so all welcome for a cup of tea or coffee.

John

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Great stuff John - I drink tea like a fish so that's the first one sorted lol. Look forward to meeting you :)

Phil - I didn't see the virgo cluster galaxies yet so that'll be v.interesting. Plus you can tell me how Herstmonceaux went :)

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Hello Kim, I am at both Kellings this year, i am on Yellow 120 (i think) and then with EMS again.

I am looking forward to the raffle :) wonder how many times ill win this year :)

Edited by CGolder

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Lol yeah Colin - wadda fix that raffle was hahaha! We'll have Glider with us for a few days so a nice little EMS contingent at the top end, what with you in yellow. Lookin forward to it allready - and desperately in need of a vacation :)

We'll be there Autumn too btw.

Edited by brantuk

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Colin, see you there at some point. It`s gotta be clear, it will make up for being clouded out in October!

Brantuk, Herstmonceaux was fantastic too, I`ll try and remember to bring some pics.

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All this talk is making me want to book for longer, i have from the 30th to the 5th booked off so could get some more nights in, how long are you guys there?

Yeah Phil!, just need to decide if i bring the big SCT or the family ;-)

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We'll be there for 10 days from the previous Sat through the main weekend leaving on Tuesday :)

Bring the SCT Colin lol :)

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Only doing Fri and Sat night.

Bring both, load it on the roof or something.

I would love to have a look through your big SCT :)

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"Bring both, load it on the roof or something"

Familly on the roof or SCT? lol

Edited by brantuk

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I already work wonders and normally fit all the Glamping gear, wife + kids and scopes in a Astra with roofbox... not sure i can push it any further.

TBH if i go for longer than the weekend it will be without the kids. gonna give KH a call tomorrow

Edited by CGolder

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You sure know how to `glamp` Colin :) You might have to leave the coffee machine behind.

Edited by Phil Fargaze

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I'm really looking forward to it as my first star party! I'm in Red 389, probably in a tent and/or a tent and a rented van depending on cost.

Aiming to have my ED80 mounted up and doing some imaging by then... though may well spend three days trying to understand/achieve polar alignment if it's cloudy for the next two months :-)

Can't wait to meet everyone and hopefully see some very cool sights.

Ben

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Great stuff Ben - look forward to meeting you and don't worry about polar alignment - we'll soon get you sorted on that if you haven't worked it out before :)

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You sure know how to `glamp` Colin :) You might have to leave the coffee machine behind.

Theres no way Colin would even contemplate leaving the Tassimo behind, or the blow up settee's, DVD, heater etc etc

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Both me & Jake will be on Yellow 130, arriving Thursday leaving Tues. Fingers crossed for some decent clear skies for a change....if not theres always the bar to retreat to

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all done, Booked from the 30th for 6 nights now on 120 Yellow :)

Looks like the kids + wife will be at home... now how i am going to make my tent lol

Just founds we couldnt have 120 so actually are on 138 yellow

Edited by CGolder

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Great stuff Ben - look forward to meeting you and don't worry about polar alignment - we'll soon get you sorted on that if you haven't worked it out before :)

Cheers!! I'm hoping I'll have got all of the newbie fumbling out of the way by then... but you never know!

Out of interest... does everyone normally just set up their equipment in the field where they're camping, ie: on their own pitch... or is there a seperate area where everyone sets up their equipment?

I am just wondering about bringing the small gazeebo I have along as I can fairly easily pull that over the scope/mount once it's set up... but wasn't sure if I could do that if I'm leaving it in a field somewhere away from the camping area?

Cheers!

Ben

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Peoples scopes are set up on their own pitch. Leaving it set up with a cover to hand would be ideal. You can walk around during the day and admire some of the set ups ( weather permitting).

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Yup - mostly folks set up their gear on their pitch, and cover over at bedtime or if the weather turns.

But you do get astro groups with block bookings that sometimes set the gear up on a couple of central pitches with the tents/caravans all round.

SGL did that one year, and EMS social group tend to do the same :)

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