Black Star Canyon Star Party Recap - Saturday August 8th, 2015
This past Saturday the sky was clear and warm throughout Orange County so when we opened the gate about 7:30 pm, we were not surprised to see there were 15 cars waiting at the gate. By the end of the night, we counted a total of 23 cars in the parking area and about 40 people.
When the Sun was setting about 8 pm, we did not get to see Venus, Mercury or Jupiter like last month. Saturn was in Scorpius so was well positioned for viewing and a favorite early target. We were busy so missed the first pass of the Hubble Space Telescope at 8:12 pm and it was still very light at that time. No one saw the 2nd pass at 9:54 pm either as was pretty dim at magnitude 2.5 and was low in the western bright sky.
We set up in the usual spot by the middle picnic table and Larry set up his big 9.25” Celestron scope next to us again. The best view I had of several objects was through Larry's telescope including M13, M8 (the Lagoon Nebula) & Neptune. Vittal set up his 8” Meade DOBS and showed us the Coat Hanger. Val showed Bonnie the Christmas Tree cluster.
Rob was first in the auxilary parking just past the 2nd gate and during the evening he showed stunning images of many objects including M27 (the Dumbell Nebula), M22 & M8. Sam set up next to us and shared nice views of M57 (the Ring Nebula), M8 and others.
Many other regulars showed up including George & Peggy Robinson, Kurt & son Kyle. Also attending were Betty & Wes Morrissey, Matt & Bob Dahms, Scott Tanner, Frank Kloer, Eric Burgdorf, Marcelo & Rachel Reginato with daughters Natalie(6) & Helena(7), David Murphy & Michelle Stout, Joyce & Kandra Kargo.
There were a number of 1st time BSC star party people, including Peter Klimkiewicz & friend Emily, Tyson Lee, Marc Adolph, Sal & Karen Riviera, Matt Dixon and Paul & Jannell.
Please forgive us if I missed anyone or we got your names spelled wrong. Bonnie tries hard to log in everyone and get your names right.
The Summer Triangle was well placed for viewing. Double star Albireo looked nice as did the double-double up by Vega. I had nice views of Saturn & moon Titan through our 6” Meade LightSwitch along with M22, M28, M8, M57, M13 & M31. Bonnie helped several see M31 through binoculars. We even found Neptune and Uranus after 11 pm.
The gate was locked at midnight and the temperature had only dropped to 64 F. Everyone raved about having a good time and the sky stayed very clear all evening. We even could make out the Milky Way early in the evening.
Steve & Bonnie