October Observing evening

The October observing evening crept into November, when about fifteen (it’s hard to tell in the dark) EAS members, plus one rather surprised lorry driver, spent a couple of hours looking around the late autumn / early winter sky.

We found lots to see naked eye, reviewing the constellations of the season with the Milky Way clearly dividing the sky in two, then dived into the telescopes.  I was delighted that we had such a variety of scopes – two 8″ Schmidt Cassegrains on GOTO mounts, an 8″ reflector on a Dobsonian, my 115mm refractor, Stuart’s 130mm Newtonian, a couple of others I couldn’t identify in the dark and plenty of binoculars.

Ian took on the role of Messier-safari as usual, and he and David turned their scopes to Uranus and Neptune too.  My favourite of the night was the yellow-and-blue double star Albireo, showing clear and distinct colours enhanced by their proximity to one another.  Jim Kaler describes them in detail here.

Thanks to all those who came and contributed to a most enjoyable evening!


2 thoughts on “October Observing evening

  1. Yes, an excellent night, with fascinated new stargazers and “veteran” sky-watchers alike enjoying views of some of the Autumn night sky’s lovely sights. Thanks for all your hard work organising these Simon, it’s much appreciated.

  2. I had a good night a good observing night once my scope aligned OK. We finally managed to get a session to coincide with a clear night. Well done Simon for hanging in there and organising it. Many different telescopes there…

    Turned into a bit of a planet and Messier watch with nice views of Uranus and Neptune – both clearly showing a disk compared to nearby stars and Uranus clearly bluish. Had to resort to planetarium software to identify for certain which of the visible dots was Neptune but once your eye was ‘in’ it was clearly disk like, unlike the stars.
    Messier wise was a bit of a tour de force… The obvious ones: planetary nebulae M57 Ring Nebula and M27 Dumbbell nebula; Galaxies M81, M82 just visible together in a 26mm eyepiece, M33 Triangulum spiral galaxy [very faint], M31 Andromeda and its two satellites [first eyeball for me] of M32 and M110. Plus open clusters M45 Pleiades [always a disappointment in a long focal length ‘scope], M36, M37 & M38 in Auriga, the Coat Hanger asterism and Caroline’s Rose [NGC 7789], thanks Simon, the Double Cluster in Perseus, thanks Moira.
    Good night, good chat.

Leave a Reply