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Pacific NW Mt St Helens EternaThread Pt 6

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#1351 Stacy

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 05:11 PM

I just committed to a Hubble Ultralight I got on AM. It is only 48 lbs and it collapses into small size for storage. The owner says you can carry it like a (50 lbs) suitcase. It comes with a "sandwiche" mirror which - according to vendor propaganda - cools so much faster than a standard mirror that no fan is required. It is open truss so I will use a shroud if needed. Basically, the very experienced owner says it puts up terrific views and is very portable. Sold me. I never imagined I could get such a large dob as such a reasonable weight. And it was pretty cheap!

The only hangup is paying for it. A few months ago, somebody got my family credit card number and charged a few items on it. We cancelled. Then last week, same thing on my personal credit card. Cancelled. Now I am waiting for the new credit card so I can add it to my PayPal account and complete the purchase. Luckily, the seller is understanding.

If things works as well as I hope, it will probably make my Uti surplus. But we shall see.


That the one from Crazy Dave? I bought a 35 Pan from him once. Nice guy!
 

#1352 rainycityastro

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 06:02 PM

Great! I look forward to a mini star party in the middle of winter!
 

#1353 Dragonwatcher

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 07:09 PM

Stacy,

Yep, it will come from Dave A. Seems very accommodating and patient & has a ton of good feedback.
 

#1354 MadHungarian

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 07:54 PM

Great! I look forward to a mini star party in the middle of winter!


Mind you, it WILL be a little chilly. Mid 20's in the night.
 

#1355 Spaced

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 08:46 PM

Mind you, it WILL be a little chilly. Mid 20's in the night.


. . . and 10 - 15 mph north wind. Bundle up! I'll bring a camp stove and water for coffee & tea, handwarmers, warm clothes and footgear, pretty much everything designed to keep this guy warm. I'll be happy to share the warm beverages. Bring your favorite teas, coffees, insulated mugs, etc.

The truck should be finished in time. I didn't mention that I'll be attending a 2PM funeral. I'll be lucky to be out of here by 4:30.
 

#1356 bluedandelion

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 08:53 PM

Wish I could go, but I really can't get away till summer.

Ajay
 

#1357 zerro1

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 09:53 PM

I was thinking everyone was talking Saturday night? I don't think I'll be able to swing Friday Night. Too many loose ends and the Deville is mad at me for ignoring the old gal since I got my pickup. It's running but the digital dash is black...

EDIT: but I did get something last night
quick process, just over and hour of data
M81

Attached Files


 

#1358 SteveG

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 01:38 PM

If it's clear, I might hit Rattlesnake Lake tonight.
 

#1359 Spaced

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 02:54 PM

Ah, c'mon, Steve, drive another 1.5 hr. and join us at Umptaneum Creek! You won't be the only one arriving after dark.
 

#1360 rainycityastro

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 03:07 PM

. . . and 10 - 15 mph north wind. Bundle up! I'll bring a camp stove and water for coffee & tea, handwarmers, warm clothes and footgear, pretty much everything designed to keep this guy warm. I'll be happy to share the warm beverages. Bring your favorite teas, coffees, insulated mugs, etc.

Yes, it will be cold but there is rarely any wind in that location. The canyon protects us pretty well. Imaging would be hard in 15mph winds. :)
Forecast is looking great! Look forward to meeting all of you at the Umtanum Campground off Yakima Canyon Road. (I believe that is what is called). There is enough place for numerous cars there. Interestingly I've never been there during the day so dont know what it looks like.
I will likely leave Seattle around 6pm and get there around 8ish. Apologize in advance for some white light around then.

Do note that there is little/no 3g with only spotty phone service. Just one more thing to keep in mind.
 

#1361 MadHungarian

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 03:57 PM

I'll be heading out shortly for Yakima Canyon myself. My boss was kind enough to give me some time off at short notice.

I did sneak out to the local playfield for a few minutes last night when it was unexpectedly quite clear and actually managed to bag my illusive M93! Not the greatest viewing of it, but just as a backup in case M93 is bashful tonight at Yakima.
 

#1362 Spaced

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 04:06 PM

Emery, I apologize in advance for the upcoming after-dark headlights & activity. :p
 

#1363 SteveG

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 07:13 PM

Yea - Rattlesnake or anything on this side of the hills is not looking good! You guys have fun ;-)
 

#1364 Stacy

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 08:31 PM

Nice short Robert!

Man I'd love to get over there. Can't take the RV over the pass this time of year without chains. Guess I'd better get some :(

Hope you guys have some clear skies!

Stacy
 

#1365 zerro1

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 09:25 PM

Thanks Stacy
Wish I could have made the trip too, but coming from north of Marysville on a Friday after working near Paine Field all day... just couldn't Swing it.

I did see this: Douglas A-1 Skyraider come in and land, and "heard" it take off to head back to Bellingham :grin:
 

#1366 Stacy

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 10:05 PM

I did see this: Douglas A-1 Skyraider come in and land, and "heard" it take off to head back to Bellingham :grin:


Wow! That must have been cool! And loud :)
 

#1367 zerro1

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 10:40 PM

Wow! That must have been cool! And loud

the funny thing, I had my camera with me, but was so stunned to see it, I just watched him fly right over head. We're working right next to the north end of the runway. You hear round engines every once in a while (mostly DeHavilland Beavers) but that big engine is a whole nuther animal. That airplane is actually kind of large, there is door in the side of it :)
 

#1368 bluedandelion

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 12:30 AM

If anyone is under clear skies, you might want to try and spot Mercury at sunset. I found this:
http://www.space.com...rving-tips.html
Mercury and Mars are supposed to be close to each other at sunset. Good Luck.

Nice work Robert.

Ajay
 

#1369 square_peg

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 11:39 AM

Hope you guys had a great night last night. How cold was it? How clear was it?
 

#1370 rainycityastro

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 02:48 PM

Just got back. We had a great time observing and imaging. High clouds came in around 11 and persisted until 1:30 or so. Then it cleared up and the transparency was back to excellent.
It was fascinating to see Winter objects (Orion etc.) in the evening, then see spring objects (M51, M101, M65, M66 etc.) and then finally summer objects (Vega, Deneb, Altair) all in a single night.

--Ram
 

#1371 Stacy

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 03:22 PM

Sweet!
 

#1372 square_peg

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 12:18 AM

It was fascinating to see Winter objects (Orion etc.) in the evening, then see spring objects (M51, M101, M65, M66 etc.) and then finally summer objects (Vega, Deneb, Altair) all in a single night.


I was pleasantly surprised to see the summer triangle yesterday morning. Spring is just around the corner!
 

#1373 MadHungarian

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 01:23 AM

Just got back. We had a great time observing and imaging. High clouds came in around 11 and persisted until 1:30 or so. Then it cleared up and the transparency was back to excellent.
It was fascinating to see Winter objects (Orion etc.) in the evening, then see spring objects (M51, M101, M65, M66 etc.) and then finally summer objects (Vega, Deneb, Altair) all in a single night.
--Ram


And I made my very first (unsuccessful) attempt there to view the infamous Horse (with many unsuccessful attempts to follow, i'm sure). Should've taken my HBeta filter over to Mike's dobsonian. But I did get a few Herschels knocked off.
 

#1374 rainycityastro

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 05:22 AM

Here is a link to the full image from yesterday

http://www.flickr.co.../in/photostream
 

#1375 Spaced

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 03:41 PM

Ram, your Whirlpool image is a revelation -- I don't recall seeing the arms coming off NGC 5195 before. And I think I can (barely) see a halo around the entire M51/5195 complex, which I've never seen before.

I was very impressed with the Umptanum site as an observing location. The ridgeline to the south blocks the brightest part of Yakima's light dome, although when periods of haze came through it was still pretty bright; same situation to the north, with Ellensburg. The south ridge still permits fairly low viewing, if sky conditions permit. Even with the light domes north and south, it was a significantly darker site than I know of on the west side, and only a couple of hours from Tacoma. High in the sky it's quite dark.

If you go there, I recommend setting up in the area to the left of the short entrance road. If a guy goes to the right, there's more shelter from highway headlights but there's a floodlight on a pumphouse or outhouse or something, that impacts night vision. The setup area is compact crushed rock and dirt. OK to set up on but I recommend a tarp to keep things clean.

Emery set up to the right of entrance road and later came down and joined us at the dark end.

I was brutally reminded that it's a lousy idea for me to set up after dark. It probably took me twice as long to get my gear operational as it would in some daylight. Also, especially in winter, temperature was dropping so fast that, even with the fan going, starting that late took quite a while for my optics to cool to ambient temperature. . . not that I mind recliner/binoc time. So the take-away lesson for me is that I don't even *think* about going back to that place unless I can take the afternoon off for travel and setup. Fortunately, road conditions weren't a factor. It was bare and dry on both sides of Snoqualmie (hear me, Stacy? :poke:)

Ram was joined by an imaging buddy, Andy, who was a very enjoyable star time companion. I hope to see him again. He seemed enthused about the June Pixieland party. Mentioning him reminds me of an astonishing thing he told me: he doesn't own an eyepiece! :foreheadslap: Apparently imagers suffer from photon phobia; the guy has a nice scope and doesn't look through it! Maybe never has! I just don't understand. OTHOH, they doubtless think I'm nuts.

Late -- I wasn't watching a clock -- after some early haze had departed and everything was running smooth, I enjoyed my favorite view of the trip, the Cocoon Galaxy, NGC 4490 & 4485, in Canes Venatici. I learned about it through a Sue French column in S & T a month or two ago. It's two interacting galaxies, post-collision or near-miss. Both are stretched out by their gravitational pull, and the smaller of the two is pulled into pieces by the gravity of the larger. It was an incredible, highly detailed view, which I will revisit and highly recommend. Ram or Andy or both overcame their photon phobia and audibly gasped when looking at it, and said he/they would take a shot at imaging it in the future.

This was the first time I've used the Mini iPad + Sky Safari at a telescope eyepiece. It met my highest hopes. The unit is a convenient size to hold in one hand while handling the scope. I spent a fair amount of time doing just that in the Markarian Chain and nearby components. And the hard case I bought for it came in handy when I dropped it once while in the recliner.

So in summary, it was a great outing and I hope to repeat it, as soon as "the stars align."
 






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