Home Forums RAC Main Forum General Discussion Observing tonight? Re: Observing tonight?


    Hello Astronomy Fans!

    Hopefully more than Jeff, Luka and myself made it outside on Saturday night.  It was truly one for the ages!  Although I didn't travel and stayed in my backyard, it was obvious that transparency and seeing were both at the top of the scale.  I set aside my usual observing goals for a "mini-Messier Marathon."  Mini because I knew I wouldn't be out very long (100 minutes, as it turned out), my western skies below 45 degrees are completely blocked, and because I was under city glow which I suspected would keep some of the dimmer targets from being seen.

    I logged, in order, M42, 43, 45, 77, 1, 36, 38, 37, 34, 103, 41, 35, 44, 67, 50, 47, 46, 48, 81, 82, 97, 108, 109, and 65.

    Most were easy to spot.  M97 was invisible even at 200X, until I used my Ultrablock filter, where it became easy to spot even at 40X.  M108 and 109 required averted vision to spot.  I could not tease out 66, as Leo was not yet very high when I packed in.  Oddly, I had my best view of 65 – the dark lane was easy to spot.  I was not terribly organized, so I probably missed some easy or obvious ones.  Still, that is 24 Messiers in 100 minutes, all found via starhopping.