For some inspiration on how to make a shroud and some other cheap mods:
https://youtu.be/vBkPU6ecVhk (no, that is not me)
Last week I had a few hours observing. First of all, I had three clear evenings to observe the conjunction-to-be. Of course, on December 21st it was raining and raining...
Furthermore, a week ago I drove to my (presumably) pretty dark spot to observe. However, this evening this spot was not so well (anymore?). It was quite close to a nearby town and there were some farms with more lighting. So I think it will be the last time I go there: it’s not really worth the ride. I do have more skies to see (no buildings nearby), but it’s not much darker.
However, when I got there and set up my stuff, and started to enjoy the skies. I went to M42 straight away. I can see M43 as well (it was quite dim though). After that I went to M52. It’s not that spectacular at first. After I removed dew from the secundary mirror it got a bit more clear. I really need a fix to prevent dew a bit more.
After M52 I went to the Pleiades (M45). It’s a breathtaking object every time I see it... Then up to Andromeda Nebula (M31). It’s a bit more bright than from my home location, though not that much. Perhaps transparancy was not as well as I hoped. Blue Snowball was hardly visible (compared to nearby stars). Then off we go to M81 and M82. The Heritage/Onesky is not big enough to observe details.
After that, fog and clouds rolled in and I called it a night. It was fun for an hour or 2. I packed my stuff and carefully drove off to home, since the fog got denser by the minute.
Next time I will try another spot. I have heard some good stories on “Wassenaarse Slag”, over here. SQM is around 20, which is pretty good for me.