Sunday, May 24, 2009

5/23 - 5/24: Dark Sky Observing at Jenny Jump State Park

I remember vividly my first viewings of the more stunning celestial objects. Saturn. Jupiter. M41. M13. Last night, however, I had an experience to trump all of the above. To leave out a tremendous amount of detail, I'll summarize in saying that I was at dark site observatory for the night, and when the clouds broke between 2:15am and 3:00am, the sky was filled with stars. Depending on the area of the sky I was looking at, stars between magnitude 5 and 6 were visible, and the milky way clearly shined. It's wildly disorienting to go from city observing to dark sky observing, but I had some great new and old sights, including M51 (the Whirlpool Galaxy - both through my 8" Dobsonian and a 16" Newtonian), M13 (found quite easily with the Telrad), Jupiter, and other fantastic objects. I will definitely be back as soon as I have the opportunity!

1 comment:

  1. Hey Jay,
    It was great meeting you up at UACNJ that night... I have been toying with this thought of what you do for a while now and talking to you gave me just what I needed!! Thanks,

    Glade you were able to get through the clouds that night, I have been coming up here sharing my telescope with the public for a number of years now and enjoy the excitement it always brings.

    The light is starting to creep in from the east... but there are a lot of mind like people who are trying our best to educate and excite the people about our skies.

    Best to you, and keep looking up :)