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Triple session a good start on 2017...


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Session 1
The sky had been clear all day, but in the afternoon, I noticed the crescent moon was moving into an ideal position for my domes southern aspect, so I gathered my gear, clobbered up and opened the dome around 15.00pm. 
Venus and the moon were not too bright against the twilight sky... but good enough to admire... The half shape of Venus was interesting to look at, and the moon showed lots of interesting features along the terminator and viewing was steady here, though it was boiling a bit around its outer edge. 
I moved on to mars and though it was tiny, I believe I could make out some darker areas on same. By this time it was getting darker, the moon mars and Venus were getting too close to a neighbours roof, so I shut down the dome.

Session 2
I fetched my 11x80s Helios Stellar bins and started hunting down Neptune. It was still too light but I checked out its position on Skysafari 4 pro and kept looking every few minutes through the bins... Yes, there it was! Unremarkable, but satisfying to see. I kept returning to this over the next hour...
As a matter of interest, I also checked Neptunes movements in relation with Mars (and the immediate stars in the FOV) over the next 24 hrs hoping to see the relative changes. The moon ? slowly grazes past it and Mars, also mars and Neptune move quite a lot against the starry background. Fascinating stuff!

I then started hunting for 45P/Honda-Mrkos-Pajdusakova after seeing Orion's (Dereks) post. this proved difficult from my garden, but i was rewarded with a glimpse when stood on my waterfall in the shade of a conifer! Thankfully I did not fall in my pond though this would have made this post more interesting! ?

Session 3
A glutton for punishment I went back into the dome at 22.15pm. The plan was to have a good look at M42, hopefully get an even better look at the trapezium and knock off a couple of unseen Messier objects M93 and M77.
I spent half an hour gazing at M42, but mainly on the trap trying to resolve trap E and trap F, going up and down my lenses, Trap E could be seen fairly easily but I only caught the merest glimpse of trap F.Oh well... 
I did get to see M93 and M77 so I was happy at that. That leaves 18 to see...
I also had a look at;
Uranus, I spent a good few minutes determining this one as it's so easy to get confused...
M45, gorgeous!


Satisfied, I called it a wrap and retreated to an electric blanket on full blast...
Thanks for reading... ??

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Great report and three sessions in one day. :thumbsup:


You obviously had a great time, if a bit of a chilly one. I chickened out after 3/4 of an hour finding the comet as I have a cold and didn't want to make it worse. I did see Neptune in the bins though and had a look at a few clusters higher up around Cygnus. 


M93 was a great low altitude catch, try some magnification on the tau Canis Majoris cluster nearby.

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