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Report From Grimsby, ON - 02/06/02

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Posted by Glenn Muller on February 7, 2002 15:13:51 UTC

As usual, my first look at the night sky was from the trailing end of a dog leash. Much to my surprise, the cloudy forecast was in actuality a totally clear night - vis. mag. 3.5, temp. 30f

Letting Farley set the pace we were back in record time and I soon had our 6" dob cooling in the shelter dome. After watching Jeopardy and ace-ing the "planets" category, Gail and I bundled up and started with Jupiter (2 bands well-defined) then Saturn. Though I made out Cassini's division and Gail couldn't, she saw some colour in the planet that I didn't.

Since Cassiopiea and Perseus were quite visible, and fairly high, we determined we were going to hunt down and bag the double cluster. Sighting the Rigel Quickfinder in the approximate zone, I started a slow dragnet search with the 25mm ep until I came across an FOV that seemed to be denser with bright stars, then keeping that grouping on the edge swept around until I found a similar one nearby. Success! NGC 869 and 884 finally in the books.

Being WEST WING fans, we decided to quit on that high note but, in retrospect, I find we appreciate what we have seen, better, once we have book-confirmed the sightings and learned a few details about them.

We are also getting to the point where a good set of star charts and a copy of Burnham's Celestial Guide are starting to rank higher on the wish list than new ep's. Oh well, only 45 weeks 'till Christmas!

Glenn

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