Well, it’s been a long while since I put up an observing report. But tonight I got my 92mm refractor out and tried to look at a few things.
The snow in my backyard has not melted, so I had to set up on my back deck, which is a poor place to put a telescope since it only leaves a very small section of the eastern sky visible.
But I was able to see Orion and the Orion nebula (M42). It’s been a while since I had looked at it, and I was just as amazed as always by its subtle shadows and the sharp image of the stars of the Trapezium standing out against the faint nebulosity.My kids came out and took a look at it too.
I had a short time with Andromeda visible, before it went behind the trees to the west. So I was able to get a nice view of the Andromeda Galaxy (M31). The Pleiades (M45) were also beautiful in a wide-field eyepiece. The Crab Nebula (M1) was also one of the items on the list as well as the Triangulum Galaxy (M33). I tried to view a few NGC objects, but between the Christmas lights, the snow on the ground and the lights of the nearby cities, I wasn’t able to make out any of them.
The only planet that could be visible tonight is Saturn, which is probably just now climbing out of the trees to the east, but I’ve already put up my telescope, so I guess that will have to wait for another night.
Not a bad night I guess, for it being the first time in several months that I’ve broken out the telescope. At least I still remembered how to put it all together and align it. But not a really good night either, because of the tiny patch of sky, and the bright skyglow that was hampering viewing.
One of these days I’ll get a permanent observatory set up and won’t have to worry about spending 30 minutes getting my equipment set up…