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Dark sky bin session


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Having a relaxing break at Eshott Hall in Northumbria. Still heaps of unmelted snow several feet deep along the edges of the back roads up here. Last night I had nice couple of hours under a dark sky and was wishing I had something bigger than my 8x42 Hawke Frontier binoculars. Light pollution is not a problem here out in the wilds 20 odd miles north of Newcastle upon Tyne and I found from a dark sky map on the internet that this is a Bortle 4 region! The best is Bortle 1 on a scale of 1 to 9. When I got dark adapted, the milky way was nicely visible. Bortle 4 is one better than Belper dark site. Lots of barely visible fuzzies were seen with the naked eye, but the little binoculars really gave superb clarity to them all and showed lots of fainter stuff. I had a thoroughly enjoyable time making the most of the very transparent sky. Here's a list of my highlights with the bins...

Cr65 Orions Arrow including The Ruby Star mag 4.3
Cr69 Lambda cluster
Cr70 Belt cluster
Leiter 9, NGC 2169, Persson 1, NGC1662

M35, Cr89 (9-12 Gemini Cluster)
Iota Gemini group

Hyades, Pleiades, Davis's Dog

M44, M67, w1 Cancri Cascade

NGC2244 Rosette Cluster
NGC2264 Christmas Tree Cluster

Leo Minor
Sailboat Asterism
30LMi group

Coma Cluster Melotte 111

M37, M36, M38, NGC1907
Flying Minnow

Alpha Persei Cluster Melotte 20
Double Cluster, Stock 2
NGC957, M34
NGC1528, NGC1545

Kembles Cascade, NGC1502
Stock 23 Pazminos Cluster

M52, NGC7789

Canes Venatici
Upgren 1

Ursa Major
M81, M82
Ferrero 6 Eiffel Tower Cluster

Edited by Tweedledee
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You had an excellent session, well documented and described! ?

A case of a humble pair of bins, a clear sky and an amazing knowledge of the sky coming together as one! 

Cheers Pete!

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Cheers, binoculars are so easy to use and show so much under a dark sky. :)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Wow what a list, some great objects as well.


Is your daughter at Newcastle Uni yet? She was studying Archietecture wasn't she.






Edited by Doc
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2 hours ago, Sunny Phil said:

Some of those are tough pots with my 15x70s in suburban skies. I find M67 a tough one.


1 hour ago, Doc said:

Wow what a list, some great objects as well.


Is your daughter at Newcastle Uni yet? She was studying Archietecture wasn't she.

The sky was really good, every so often a small cloud blew over but I just pointed the bins on a different bit of fantastically clear sky. :)


Yes Mick she is finishing her 3rd year of Architecture now and will get her degree this year. Then she's doing a year out working for an architecture practice and then back to uni for 3 more years to become a Chartered Architect.

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Good report Pete. I have a pair of 10x42 bins and a garden recliner which make great widefield observing gear. Its nice to free oneself of tech and get back to basics sometimes

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