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Excellent Night

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Posted by L Madia on March 9, 2002 05:30:55 UTC

3/9/02 at North Central West Virginia. Approximately 9:00 to 10:15 pm...

I had a great time tonight. The temp was in the mid 50"s and the sky pretty clear. I pulled out my 114mm Tasco reflecter and started out with Saturn. I could tell I was in for a good night as I easily found the planet with the 20mm ep and could see Titan without trouble. I could see her in the 20mm, increased to the 12.5mm and finally used the 4mm. A good views. I even put the 3x Barlow on all the eps and got good looks with the 20 and the 12.5.

Next went to Orion. Been having a hard time finding the Nebula lately as my neibors house has been in the way, but no tonight. I scanned the belt and moved down till I picked up a double star system. I than moved further down in the constellation till I found the heart of the Nebula, the quad star. I was using the 20mm, but to get the seperation of the four stars I increased to the 12.5 and than just for fun, I used the 4mm....great views.

I next picked up my favorite target-Jupiter. Tonight was the best view I have had. Even with the 20mm I could see better detail than ever before. The planet seemed unusually clear, but I could only see 3 moons. I stepped up to the 12.5mm and I found that two of the inner moons were so close to each other I need the extra power to seperate them. I observed three to four bands of blue gas. Faintly, out of the corner of my eye I believe I caught a glimps of a fifth moon, or maybe just a far off star.

I increassed to the 4mm and picked up the best view yet. The inner bands of blue were very distinct while the outer bands would at times suddenly come into focus. I put in the 12.5mm with the 3x barlow and had another wonderful view.

It was a great night for viewing.....

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