Post by Mark McLaughlin on Mar 9, 2018 19:05:49 GMT -8
Weather permitting (must be clear out) the FVAS will be having a viewing session at McDonald Park. Members plan to set up before it gets too dark, say 5:30 PM. This is our first run of the year, mainly to get reacquainted with our equipment and to work out any bugs. General public welcome! Dress warm, it gets a little cool out. For those who may have never been at our site on #3 Road, we are on the North side of the Freeway. If you see a Cement Silo you are there! Park in the public spots and walk to the East side near the Dyke. Some members will have their vehicles here, just look for them. Oh, RED flashlights only in the Observing Area. No white lights! I will update this thread late Saturday afternoon just in case the weather goes bad. See you there! MMc
Post by Mark McLaughlin on Mar 11, 2018 11:54:42 GMT -8
Thanks to Elliott for hosting at the Dark Sky Park last night, it was a nice clear cool night out. I arrived early to set up my scope and scout out the area. Wow! The City has done a great job of mowing and knocking down some dangerous trees. The actual Pad area was not too soft even with the recent rain. With Elliott's 12" and my 16", the pad space was taken up nicely. We had a young man named Griffin and his Mom in tow show up with their 4" (think it was an ioptron?) for first light. "Read that manual young fella,you will learn to operate it well!" I believe Paul woulda said this. So there I was, surrounded by the buzz of motor drives slewing around the heavens. I had to make my own sounds for a laugh! Elliott and I, tested a 17 Nagler that looks like it has been thru a rock tumbler. Dirty but it still works optically. Short story on this, the eyepiece got wet in Paul's garage. Must send it in to MFOptics to get cleaned. Also an old Erfle (15?) was tested with a big surprise for me...it was a really nice crisp view of M45.
With Gary L. at my side we looked at M35 and nearby NGC 2158. then off to NGC 2392 the Eskimo nebula. Add Abell 21 ,NGC 2264, M42 area, M37,M36,M38,M1, and last M51, one of PG's favorite objects.It was 20.38 on the Sky Quality Meter. Lots of light from Chilliwack up to near 45 degrees on the East horizon. The light from the new farm house it not that bad, more of a distraction then a bother. Most of it is behind the berm/dyke, but does wipe out the south horizon a bit. I have an idea to block this for viewing sessions which i will bring up next meeting. You can tell the Valley is getting ever more light polluted as time goes by. Sad as they say.
I am off either to Silverdale tonight to check out Wren park for a possible DSPark on this side of the river, or my spot up near Dickson Lake where i know i will get my first "21 Sky" this year. Dreaming of Merritt this fall with a 21.8 reading........ Mark Mc