Posted 02 March 2004 - 07:58 PM
I look forward to reading all the great stuff on this forum and may even post a few to get my feet wet.
Keep both eyes open!
Posted 02 March 2004 - 08:03 PM
Glad you found us. How many members are in P.A.S.?
Posted 02 March 2004 - 08:11 PM
The PAS has about 180 members. It's been around since 1959.
We have our own dark sky site with full domed observatory and bunkhouse.
It is a prolific society in spite of our below sea level location here in the Deep South.
Posted 02 March 2004 - 09:36 PM
Posted 03 March 2004 - 07:52 AM
Posted 03 March 2004 - 01:50 PM
I can't imagine a dark site near NO, and with a domed observatory no less. We can almost see the lights from NO in Galveston.
Laissez le bons temp rouler! Nick
Posted 03 March 2004 - 03:06 PM
For a real good website that has a lot of research and maps on evaluating potential areas in terms of night sky brightness, go to:
You can load up the North America map and then enlarge it to zoom in on an area of interest.
Open ocean areas and major portions of the southwest are colored black (that is as good as it gets), next comes gray (looks black if there are no adjacent black areas. After this the colors are blue, green, yellow, orange, red and white. No Milky Way is visible in orange, red and white areas. Marginal in yellow and progressively better as we move from green to blue to gray to black.
Our club site, 60 miles north of New Orleans is in the green area (not so good), the Kisatchie Star Party is squarely in a blue zone and really very nice on cool, dry nights. TSP is in the black, large portions of the Texas Hill Country are in the gray, as is the Okie-Tex Star Party in extreme western Oklahoma.
Unfortunately, our site, like so many others, is slowly deteriorating. New members of our club think it is great, but many have never been exposed to truly great sites, nor did they see this site 10 years ago, when it would have been a "blue" site and about 8 on a 10 point scale rather than the 7 it is now.
Posted 03 March 2004 - 04:36 PM
Nick, believe it or not, our site has a pretty good sky. I think it's easily a mag. 7 (Barry Simon may know the actual mag.)on decent nights and on occassion gets better. However,it's probably going deteriorate over time as the area we are in is becoming a part of what I call "Urbanuntry". A new commuter paradise.
Se la vie, Se La guerre, Se la Pom De Terre! (Trans: Such is Life, Such is War, Like a potatoe in the ground!) Why am I talking like this...I'm not even a Cajun!
Posted 03 March 2004 - 05:36 PM
The skies at our club site would top out at about mag 6.8 in about 1994/95 on exceptional dry winter nights. Now we may occasionally get a mag 6.2 to 6.3 night if we are lucky.
Not bad for us city boys who are used to a mag 4.5 to 4.7 on a normally clear night in the suburbs and a 5.2 to 5.4 on a very rare exceptional night. However, once spoiled by a really, really dark location (Mag 7 or better) it is hard to get really excited about our typical 5.8 to 6.0 skies at the club site.
Let's gas up the car and find some really dark skies!
Posted 03 March 2004 - 07:38 PM
Like you said earlier, most members don't visit a really dark site much anymore. I fall into that catagory myself.
The true dark sites within 100 miles of our location are dwindling or nonexistant. The best sky I can remember is when we went to the Mars Hill area in the De Soto Natl. Forest long ago.
You're right, you do have to gass-up the car to find a decent site nowadays.
Too many people in the world!