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#176 DeanS

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 12:21 PM

Hi Jim,

Has been great so far, just got up myself after seeing the sun come up 2 mornings in a row.

Stop by and say hello. I am on the east side on the upper field near the center steps, right in front of a maroon van. And the Casita travel trailer under the wall.

Dean

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#177 csa/montana

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 12:27 PM

Dean, thanks for the photo for those of us that are starving for photos! :grin:

#178 rockethead26

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 01:08 PM

I'd love to post some pics, but I have no way to do it. I'm technologically challenged.

As Tom and Svezda already stated, last night was another good one. I didn't even pull the cover off my scope until about 11:15 when it started looking promising. Seeing average, but transparency was good all night with some fluctuations. At about 2 am the transparency got very good for almost an hour (I'd give it a 4+) so that I could plainly follow both spiral arms of M51 and actually see the granulation of the H-II regions. It was a sweet view.

I made it through another 20 Herschel objects and spent about 2 hours just enjoying old favorites. I hit the wall at 3:30.

Forecast questionable for tonight, but taken with a grain of salt.

#179 Erix

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 03:16 PM

Would everyone like to get together tomorrow (Thursday) around 3:30 for ice cream at the drug store?

I've got stacks of photos but need to resize them for CN. I've gone two nights in a row until 6am. Skies have been clearing up pretty nice as the nights progress. Stacks of notes and a few sketches here and there. I'm having a fantastic time.

Right, time for a nap! Managed four hours sleep this morning. And about four hours total yesterday.

#180 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 04:40 PM

Gastronaut and I heard the roosters crowing long before we went to bed the past two nights. We saw great passes of the HST shortly before 6:00 a. m. each morning.

The Milky Way easily cast a shadow last night. Omega Centauri was magnificent through Gastronaut's 22" SDM Dob and a 10mm Ethos. The breadth of Comet PanSTARRS tail was striking. A number of Eta Aquarids were seen.

I took a tour of the McDonald Observatory yesterday. Not long ago Larry Mitchell gave a very interesting talk on the illusion of interacting galaxies.

Dave Mitsky

#181 Svezda

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 06:17 PM

I'd love to post some pics, but I have no way to do it. I'm technologically challenged.

This and always being incredibly busy at TSP is why I haven't posted pics. I've never done one before on CN and have too much to do just keeping up with observing, the ranch lunch and dinner schedule, afternoon talks, evening presentations, repair and mtce of various items, etc.

Thanks to those who take the time needed to save pics to computer, process as needed, then upload to the forum.

#182 Svezda

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 06:21 PM

Thanks to Alvin and to Perry Remaklus of Willmann-Bell, I'm back in business with my beloved Megastar! :love: It wasn't real easy to figure out, but unless it stops working again :praying:, it should be good to go. :rainbow:

#183 rockethead26

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 08:36 PM

Hi Jim,

Has been great so far, just got up myself after seeing the sun come up 2 mornings in a row.

Stop by and say hello. I am on the east side on the upper field near the center steps, right in front of a maroon van. And the Casita travel trailer under the wall.

Dean


Hi Dean,

Went looking for you after lunch, but you were out. I'll try to find you tomorrow.

#184 Alvin Huey

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 10:21 PM

Thanks to Alvin and to Perry Remaklus of Willmann-Bell, I'm back in business with my beloved Megastar! :love: It wasn't real easy to figure out, but unless it stops working again :praying:, it should be good to go. :rainbow:


Glad that you able to track Perry down. Funny how you called his answering machine and he is probably only 100 feet away.

:)

Hope for more clear nights. I really hope that TSP 2014 is not in May-June timeframe, if it is, I'm skipping it.

Alvin

#185 derangedhermit

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 10:42 PM

Here's a photo looking down (!) on Prude Ranch taken from about 5 miles away at the top of Skyline Drive in Davis Mtns State Park on Wed afternoon. Within the red loop you can see the upper and center field areas - the lower field is to the left, just hidden from view.

The Davis Mountains region is spectacular, rugged country. Volcanoes in Texas!

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#186 derangedhermit

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 10:58 AM

I was surprised at the small vendor presence. BFSP, my only point of comparison, has 3-4x the vendor presence.

I read, maybe in this thread, maybe an older one, that traffic on 118 wasn't a problem on the lower field. Well, this week that becomes mostly true sometime between 12 and 1 am. Between 10 and 12, I felt at times I might as well have set up beside I-10.

The parking, tents, canopies, and equipment placement on the other two fields seemed well-planned and separated; the lower field arrangements are more open range - cars, trucks, tents, campers and equipment are thoroughly mixed across the field. It caused us no problems, though.

Everything we brought, including our skin, is saturated in fine dust and perforated by sandspurs.

Our thanks to Bob Logue for sharing his knowledge with a newbie couple on managing equipment and wind, dust, etc. It's embarrassing when your scope falls like a felled tree when the first gust of wind comes along. (Fortunately, it landed squarely on the Telrad, so no damage was done - the Telrad even held alignment:)

#187 galaxy_jason

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 12:45 PM

Capturing lots of time lapse video and will put together a movie when I get home. Here is a preview done before blackout so there are some ground lights...

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=PZiZk3jX9Qo

#188 The Planetman

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 09:20 PM

That is so cool Jason! Thanks for sharing!!

#189 David Pavlich

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 09:23 PM

Cool video, Jason!

David

#190 Smittty692k4

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 09:59 PM

Gorgeous Jason. Thank you.

#191 LivingNDixie

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 07:30 PM

Any news when TSP 2014 will be. The link to the New York Times article was cool on the main website.
http://www.nytimes.c...-consider-th...

#192 MDavid

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 09:22 PM

Any news when TSP 2014 will be. The link to the New York Times article was cool on the main website.
http://www.nytimes.c...-consider-th...


Not sure about TSP 2014, but Anne interviewed us (my son is Samuel and my wife is Kelly (a.k.a Mrs. David)...we were the people mentioned in her article and we had a great time)...our thanks go out to Orlando, Joe, the guy with the awesome huge 25 inch Obsession, and another guy with the equally awesome Astro-Physics refractor that were kind enough to share some amazing views with my family. Joe especially took hours with us giving us a tour of the sky using Orlando's Orion XT12g reflector. There were others there that also made for a wonderful and memorable first TSP and I want to say thank you to you all for being so gracious and kind to my family.

We are also greatful to the people of Prude Ranch for enabling such a wonderful gathering each year and I hope we can make it again next year.

#193 FJA

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 01:30 AM

TSP 2014 is May 25 to June 1, which might put some people off, I've already seen grumbles on Facebook about it.

#194 jerry10137

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 06:52 PM

Had a great time and met some great new people. Hope everyone made it home safe. I have a few photos from the event but I need to process them so stay tuned.

I left on Friday, it appears, just as a storm was rolling thru. How was the weather/viewing Friday and Saturday evening?

#195 FJA

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 06:22 AM

From what people said on Facebook, it was cloudy on Friday and Saturday. I think a couple of them packed up and left early because the forecast wasn't very promising.

#196 Tom Laskowski

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 07:33 AM

I packed up and left Saturday afternoon because it wasn't looking very promising. But, it rained most of the day Friday with thunder, lightning and even some small hail but somehow miraculously cleared Friday night. So I was thinking about staying for Saturday night just in case it cleared again. I made it back very early Monday morning and am now back at work.

#197 Steve Daniel

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 10:14 AM

Saturday night was totally cloudy, so it became a good night to have a beer, read a book, and get lots of sleep!

#198 csa/montana

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 10:18 AM

so it became a good night to have a beer, read a book,



So where are all the photos everyone? :lol:

#199 FJA

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 10:37 AM

so it became a good night to have a beer, read a book,



So where are all the photos everyone? :lol:


Yes, indeed, where are the photos? I refer you to Steph's post earlier in this thread ;) :grin:

Posted Image


And I'm talkin' people pics, not just field set-up pics.... :grin:


I *am* glad y'all got some sky last night; when I saw posts on FB and some of you online here around 10-11-12 last night, I was worried y'all had gotten totally clouded out. Happy to hear it cleared up!



#200 Bill Kocken

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 11:17 AM

My summary...
This was my 3rd TSP, and probably the least productive. If I recall correctly, here is a night by night recap:

The first night (Sunday)was just OK. I worked on Wagner's 2013 list and got mostly through it until the skies deteriorated somewhere around 1 to 2AM.

Monday night was quite nice. I finished the Wagner list and resumed working on my Herschel II list. I think I quit at around 3AM ish.

Tuesday night was so-so. I started working on an older Wagner list and discovered that most of the objects were very low to the horizon in the south. I spent a lot of time sitting on the ground at my dob's eyepiece. I eventually gave up on that and resumed the Herschel II list. I was having very little luck. Transparency was just 3/5 and I was struggling with mag 12 to 13 galaxies in Hydra. When a mag 14 galaxy came up on my list, I knew it wasn't going to happen. The cold that I had picked up was winning. I gave up at about 1:30.

Wednesday night teased us, so we sat on the porch and had a few brews. I crashed at about 1:00, although some of the Minnesota contingent got in a couple of hours.

Thursday night was a bust.

Friday, was cloudy and drizzly and the Clear Sky Chart was hopeless and the forecast was for Saturday to be a no-go. We packed up our stuff and planned to leave at dawn on Saturday. After the Friday night talk and the give-away we discovered clear skies. It was chilly and very damp. Our astro stuff, including our warm clothes were inaccessible, so we retired early, convinced that the clear skies would not last long. When we arose at 5:30, 3 of the other Minnesota crew were just starting to shut down after having observed all night! It was chilly and the dew was heavy but they were prepared.

We left Saturday morning with hopes of doing some observing at our friend's place in SW Minnesota on Sunday night. The forecast for that was wrong, too!

All in all it was still a fun trip. We enjoyed our beer-30 Happy Hours and had some good viewing. We did the McDonald tour and another self-guided tour to Alpine and Marfa was fun. The drive to and from TSP was looong but safe and pleasant enough.

Next year's TSP is in late May and into June. That's too late and possibly too hot for this Minnesota boy.






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