Saturday, August 25, 2001

Triple Delight!

I decided last minute to head to Coe Saturday night. I arrived just after twilight. A handful of TACos were there, as already reported by Matt Marcus.

Before moon set I was trying to find open clusters with my 8" f/7. Intermittently, I would look at some of the bright planetaries up in Cygnus. NGC 7008 and NGC 7027 were very interesting structurally. I was quite surprised how well 7008 showed detail, especially when compared to my views of it at Lassen just a week prior.

While looking around in Cepheus I had one of those "non-GoTo" moments... where you find something unexpected while hopping/hunting. It was Struve 2816. I don't know how well the entire view will show in suburban skies, but from a bit of elevation and with good steadiness and transparency the 70X view was stunning. The field contained what appeared to be an open cluster about 40' in diameter, fairly rich. Standing alone in the central portion were easily the three brightest stars in the field... in a true sense the center of attention. The stars commanded my attention... evenly spaced and closely set... the colors ... two nice blue stars bracketing a brighter gold center component. It appeared to be so perfect that I thought it the sort of look Hollywood strives for in a space special-effect.

Worth looking at.

I had planned a short night out... after all, I had just felt like drive and knew a few other observers were heading to Coe. I certainly didn't plan on getting back home at 4 a.m.

Nice night out.

No comments: