Sunday, October 10, 2010

10 10 10! A fine night at Willow Springs.

Sunday afternoon, Richard Navarrete, Marko Johnston, Mina Reyes and I all met at Willow Springs for what would be an excellent night of observing. Between us, there were three 18" Dobs, and a pair of 20x80 Celestron Giant Binoculars on a parallelogram mount. Conditions were warm, requiring no more than a few light layers of clothing, and although the SQM readings were average for our location, they were better than conditions reported from other sites the prior nights. To our west there was some brightening over the hills, in the direction of Hollister, but overhead, we were going deep, and enjoying hunting challenging targets in the early fall skies. To the north, Comet Hartley 2 was on the verge of naked eye visibility. Over the night, Mina was doing quick sketches of the comet's position every 45 minutes or so, and you could easy follow its rapid motion against the background stars.

The night was very pleasant, with everyone sharing views, taking time to chat, joke, have a few drinks, and relax with each others company. The way it should be! Among the most interesting views were Abell 85 in Marko's scope, and several Hicksons in Richard's... of which I thought Hickson 16 was amazing, and could rival Hickson 68 for best in class!

I had created an Excel with about 100 targets to choose from, in a swath of sky a degree wide centered on RA 23:29. I began in the north, and as usual, never got much further south than zenith. Its just too much fun teasing out detail - in some cases, just teasing out anything at all!

I don't know what time we called it a night, but it must have been between 2:30 and 3:00 a.m. As I lay in my truck, in bed, door open to the south... I fell asleep watching Orion climbing high in the sky to the south. I don't think I'd been to Willow Springs since maybe June - this was a great return.

Big thanks to Kevin Ritschel, whom I was very pleased to see again. A big red coming your way next time I visit.... thank you so much for the hospitality... your guests give you all 10's.

Here are the targets I viewed, and brief notes:

N 7762 Cep OC 11 23 50 01 +68 02 18

18" 20mm - 25 stars of similar (tier 1) magnitude in three distinct chains, largest one running E/W for about 13', next largest running S of the E end of the long one for about 8' and the shortest one between the other two running NW/SE for only 2' and having only 4 stars. Rest of cluster is dim background comprising of a distinct haze.

Sh 2-155 BN 60 2 22 56 43 +62 37 04

18" 20mm - three bright stars are embedded in nebulosity. SAO 20334, SAO 20335 and SAO 20332. Ultrablock helps show mottling throughout the area.. Nebulosity is most distinct on the W or "inside" of the curve of the three stars.

Sh 2-165 BN 10 2 23 39 48 +61 56 15

18" 29mm - Ultrablock reveals a distinct small bright glow around GSC 4284:722 - along with dim nebulosity located tightly to the NW of the star, and extending more dimly away to the S and a bit to the SE.

Sh 2-161 BN 55 2 23 15 29 +61 51 43

18" 20mm - Ultrablock shows very slight glow between SAO 19274, GSC 4252:370 and GSC 4248:909 with "brightest" area near GSC 4248:909.

M052 CAS OC 13 8 23 24 12 +61 35 00 NGC 7654

18" 20mm - bright, distinct cluster about 20' diameter - 1 very bright star near edge of cluster, about 20 bright (tier 1) stars embedded in estimated 50 dimmer (tier 2) stars. Dim glow of many more stars is throughout cluster.

Sh 2-158 BN 10 3 23 13 39 +61 30 40 N7538

18" 7mm - pair of "bright(er)" stars, (actually three), with dark lane to their W in an obvious glow surrounding the stars. Brightest section is S of the stars. Lower section (N of the stars) the glow is obviously mottled. Nice find!

Sh 2-162 BN 40 3 23 20 41 +61 11 52 N7635 = Bubble Nebula

18" 7mm - surrounds mag 8.7 star SAO 20575 - is mottled extending W with an E/W split showing a dark lane. Brightest section of nebulosity SW of star, to NE is an arc with a hard edge.

N 7419 Cep OC 2 22 54 20 +60 48 55

18" 12mm - nice compact cluster consisting of 1 very bright (tier 1) star, two dimmer (tier 2), and 19 dim ones, at the end of a nice chain of three stars in diminishing magnitude leading to the cluster. Very attractive at 193x.

NGC 7510 Cep OC 2 7.9 23 11 30 +60 34 00

18" 20mm - nice spray of stars in three chains coming off a mag 9.6 star, and all extending W. Very compact and distinctive.

Sh 2-157 BN 90 3 23 16 03 +60 02 44 18"

12mm - dim glow around GSC 4263:2102 and extending toward a distinct chain of stars to the east. Filters do not help. Distinct but very dim.

Abell 82 Cas PN 94" 12.7 23 45 47 +57 03 59 PK 114-4.1 = PN G114.0-04.6

18" 12mm - OIII filter. Dim, round, possibly annular. At least two stars involved, one bright. Bright star is possible central star. Appears mottled.

Abell 83 Cas PN 42"x37" 15.5 23 46 46 +54 44 38 PK 113-6.1 = PN G113.6-06.9

18" 12mm - OIII filter. Very dim, about 7'x3' E/W. Even brightness, possibly crescent and open to the north.

Abell 84 Cas PN 147"x114" 13 23 47 44 +51 23 56 PK 112-10.1 = PN G112.9-10.2

18" 12mm - OIII filter. Obvious oval glow that includes a bright star. Star makes nebula appear uneven in brightness, may be an optical illusion, but very noticeable. Nebula may be 2x as large as it seems around star, extending away from the star as a large oval with uneven brightness.

NGC 7686 And OC 7.4 5.6 23 30 60 +49 08 00

18" 20mm - large coarse cluster with wide range of star magnitudes. Dominated by brightest star in center of group. Wiggling the scope creates excellent "Mexican Jumping Star" effect. Perhaps 8'x10' in size.

NGC 7662 And PN 32x23 9 23 25 54 +42 33 00

18" 7mm - OIII filter. Distinct torus in center is dark. No central star. Torus surrounded by very bright glowing ring, which is immediately surrounded by a dimmer ring of equal thickness. This "inner" section is elongated generally E/W. Surrounding inner section is a large and dim "change in contrast" envelope extending in a mostly N/S elongation.

N 7640 And GX 10.5x2.0 11.3 23 22 06 +40 50 44

18" 12mm - large elongated galaxy with slightly brighter core and mostly even surface brightness. Some variation seems to indicate slighter brightening on NE half. Star embedded just off S of the central region appears to bifurcate galaxy, but this is illusion.

N7445/46/49 And Trio 4 14.6:14.4:14.0 22 59 42 +39 06 00

18" 7mm - trio shows readily at this magnification. NGC 7449 seems mostly round but perhaps a bit of elongation. NGC 7446 about equal in brightness and shape to 7449. NGC 7445 is noticeably dimmer, and shows elongation.

Arp 86 GX 3.3'x2.1' 12 23 47 04 +29 29 00 NGC 7753

18" 7mm - this NGC is listed as nonexistent, but NGC 7549 found at location. First seen though were NGC 7550 to its S and NGC 7457 to NGC 7550's W. Finally, after seeing NGC 7549, CGCG 454-15 appeared.

All astrophotos from Digital Sky Survey except NGC 7662 credit Adam Block and Orion by Hubblesite. Mina Reyes photo by Guillermo Moran.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Friendly Skies

A group of six observers spent three nights at Mount Lassen this last new moon. We went during the week, with our last night August 12th, the peak night for the Perseid Meteor Shower. We stayed in a cabin, in Mineral, a few miles outside the park's southwest entrance.

I always marvel at the views of the park entering from the southwest. In past years, camping, the group would stay at Lost Creek Group Campground, or Summit Lake South. Both are great places from which to enjoy the park. We'd enter through the north, via the Manzanita Lake entrance. From there, you get to see some nice lakes, and views of the volcanic peak, however - the views entering the park from Mineral show the amazing display of the color and form that the geothermal and glacial activates have sculpted into the landscape. It is among my favorite drives in California. I also think it is no more driving time back from our observing site at Bumpass Hell Parking lot, to Mineral, than back to Lost Creek Campground, and only slightly longer than to Summit Lakes. The conveniences of having a cabin to relax/recover in during the day cannot be overstated.

Our first night was a cloud-out. This was not a problem, as several of the attendees has just come from other outdoor activies, including backpacking at Yosemite and several nights teaching astronomy at a camp in the Sierra. Getting a good night's sleep on arrival, with the prospect of two clear nights following, was a welcome idea. The second day we all went on a hike, 3.6 miles round trip, to Bumpass Hell. There was still some snow on the trail in places, but the hike was easy and spectacular. Views of the peaks forming the ancient Mt. Brokeoff (Mt. Tehama) volcano, followed by the amazing geothermal pools, steam vents and mud pots, was great fun. Easy hike, and highly recommended. That night we drove out, at 7pm, to the parking lot at Bumpass Hell. The site is over 8200 feet elevation, and looks out over the jagged peaks of that formed Mt. Brokeoff. It is a magical place at sunset, when the deep blue sky glows neon against the jagged silhouettes of the
surrounding peaks. In the east, the division between night and day (Belt of Venus) rose - a band of crimson between the blue of day and darkening gray-to-black of night. Some of us busied ourselves setting up gear, others sat quietly in chairs watching the show unfold. The second night, the night of the Perseids, was the best, as a one day old moon hung low over Mt. Brokeoff in the west, with bright Venus directly above it, Mars close to its east, and Saturn just a bit further to its west. Night was sweeping over us from the east.

And then the stars came out.

The stars at Lassen are incomparable. I didn't do a limiting magnitude count, but two occurrences testify to the darkness and transparency of the place. Looking down, we could not see our feet. Faces were featureless with only our heads and upper bodies visible against the ambient light. As telling was that charts Steve Gottlieb printed out for potential observing targets, were not deep enough. Mag 16 galaxies were not a challenge. Looking up, the dark lanes in and around the Milky Way beginning in Sagittarius, up through Aquila's "Off Ramp", bordering the star clouds of Cygnus and into the Northern Coal Sack, were black and detailed, with tendrils winding out and disappearing into the surrounding star fields. Since this was the peak of the Perseids, everyone took time to just look up, which provided ample time to marvel at the broad unaided views. This is truly a place where words are inadequate - by day and by night.

As for the Perseids, they showed up, but it was not a big show. Of course I am jaded, having witnessed the Leonid Meteor Storm several years back, but even so, I'd estimate the maximum hourly count was about half this year of what one might wish for.

We observed those two nights until I think close to 3 a.m. We all had special projects. I prepared by downloading (this sounds crazy, but look at the hobby we have!) close to 200 pdf files from Paul Alsing's web-space. Of those, I winnowed the list down to 38 targets, with Steve's help. The last night, I narrowed it down to 13 remaining. Many were difficult and exotic objects, but the great skies allowed me to find and observe everything I looked for.

A big thanks for those friend who attended, for making it such a nice. Richard Navarrete, who booked the cabin, Steve Gottlieb, Ray Cash, Ken Archuleta, and, her first time to Lassen - Mina Reyes.

They were indeed, friendly skies.

Here are the objects I observed, and my notes, all with an 18" f/4.5 Dobsonian.

Abell 55
12mm UHC - obvious although dim. Suspected annular with slight E/W elongation.

Abell 62
12mm UHC - very dim, large, round, with dim central star. Many stars embedded around circumference, glowing. More pronounced glow along southwest edge. Estimate 5' diameter.

Abell 64
7mm no filter - very dim, elongated E/W with possible curve outward to S. Even brightness across object.

Abell 65
12mm - even round glow, no detail. Responds to filters but not a great difference.

NGC 6751
7mm w/UHC - small, round, bright, mottled. With 4.8 Nagler object is transformed - concentric rings around a small torus, and dim central star.

NGC 6772
4.8mm dim, round, even surface brightness across object, fairly sharply defined edges, possible very slight annularity.'

NGC 6778
4.8mm - bright, squashed and rectangular appearance. Central star is just brighter than disk. Dark intrusion into disk gives sense of slight annularity. 1.8x1 ratio.

NGC 6781
7mm - large, bright, round, soft edges, somewhat annular, direct vision easily, about 2' diameter. Filters do not help much.

NGC 6804
4.8mm - large, faint, mottled, very dim central star, other stars seem embedded in shell, sharp edges.

Parsamian 21
4.8mm - dim star on north end of slightly expanding fan of comet shape extending south, appears brighter on western edge. Filter did not help.

Palomar 11
12mm - dim haze with several members resolved. Bright star close by to the north, dimmer but obvious pair equally close to the northeast. No problem seeing this target. 7mm - fairly even glow, round, several dim stars resolve especially near the southern edge.

DWB 111 - Propeller
20mm H-Beta - v shape of stars with double at vertex. Propeller goes from top of V to top of V, most pronounced at the top of both chains in the V shape. Some nebula also shows dipping "down" toward V at the vertex.

Gyulbudaghiam 98-171
7mm no filter. Appears to be a cometary reflection nebula extending ENE from a medium bright field star. Surrounds the star and spreads widely away from it. Dim star embedded in the end of the tail, possible knot about mid-point along the object's major axis.

12mm UHC - dim star with averted glow surrounding. Glow appears mottled, but has a tight round glow with the star offset slightly to the E, embedded in a larger oval halo extending W. Also in field is long streaky sections of nebulosity extending NW/SE and most pronounced involving stars to the SE, and to their north.

20mm UHC - dim star but brightest in field, embedded in dim but obvious glow extending in fan shape NE and S, with dark intrusions. Nebula has sharp edge along the NE section. Other areas of nebulosity are throughout the region, especially pronounced to the E over 40', dark lanes are clear. Very easy location close to Deneb.

20mm - OIII - nice supernova remnant strip, arcing SW/NE around a bright easy to locate star just off Alberio in Cygnus. Brightest section is due S of the star, strip is quite long, over 40'. Check to see if there is a second strip paralleling the one observed, as there are hints of it in the field.

20mm - OIII - very nice large swath of HII with bright stars embedded at opposite ends, including some doubles. Bright single star is at N end of object, two pronounced arcs of nebulosity extend south along the E and W edges, with a faintly nebulous center. This is an oval, with two pair of stars embedded in the S end, where nebulosity is its most obvious. The southern part is actually a large knot of nebulosity with the pairs of doubles clearly embedded. Shell is least obvious to the east, and also seems to have some nebulosity extending further SE from the S edge.

Simeis 3-210
20mm - OIII - long strand of nebulosity that is probably an outlying section of the Veil Nebula. Confused at first with the 52 Cygni section of the Veil due to the embedded star in this target. Strand extends SE/NW and crosses entire length of 20 Nagler - 47'. View was dim, but direct vision.

WR 134
20mm - OIII - very distinct Wolf Rayet nebula, with western section most pronounced, extended north and around to the east, with a cavity between, having a chain of four stars in the middle and showing some involved nebulosity. Like a very large Crescent Nebula, but sparse on the southeast section. Still, other dim nebulae are throughout the area on the SE side.

Photos 1, 3, and 4 are by Richard Navarrete

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Houge Park's Big Turnout

Local skies in San Jose were beautiful all day, and spring daytime temperatures made their first real appearance, so it was no surprise we had a big public turnout at the San Jose Astronomical Association's Houge Park in-town public star party last night. However, I had a lot of concern when packing to go, as the clear blue skies were washing due to a high thin opaque layers of clouds encroaching from the west.

Someone counted eleven telescopes. There were a number of refractors, including a very nice 6" AP on a 900 mount, and at least three ten inch Dobs (including mine). The crowd began to show up just at dusk, and I really didn't have the opportunity to walk around and look at the other scopes. Early on, people were fascinated that they could see Venus and Mars. There was also a thin crescent moon. Venus was so low that the moon and Mars were the showpieces. Later though, Saturn would rise and take center stage.

Aside from the local (solar-system) targets, I was showing people views of The Orion Nebula
(M42), the big open cluster M35 and NGC 2392 (aka The Eskimo Nebula) in Gemini. The high clouds persisted, cutting down transparency, but there was still enough detail in all the objects to make it worthwhile. Saturn at times of steady seeing was spectacular - creamy golden with a slit of a gap in the nearly edge-on rings, and subtle banding on the disk of the planet. Mars was OK, but only occasionally gave up much detail - people just liked its color! There were some quite good views of it though through the 6" AP later in the evening.

Other than Saturn, the crowd pleaser in my scope was The Orion Nebula. People asked good questions about size and distance, I would answer about light years and what the term meant. Kevin Roberts, set up next to me, interjected with the most tangible comment about the distance, saying the light we're seeing left from the object around the time of the fall of the Roman Empire, before the Dark Ages - good answer! A boy asked how the nebula was formed, so I got to talk a bit about dust and gas in space, gravity, stellar winds and radiation, so aside from the nice visual of the (brighter portion of the ) nebula and Trapezium stars, there was some appreciation cognitively, for what was being viewed. I had added an Orion Ultrablock filter to show more of the nebula - of course it dimmed the stars, but it also led to discussions about passing only certain wavelengths of light. So, all these things led to interesting discussions, and a good size crowd around the scope.

Overhead, there were long bands of thin clouds that would pass through. Some of them reminded me of the great aurora we saw from Houge Park several years ago. But there was still plenty of decent sky to enjoy. People seemed to like M35, as a contrast in object type to M42. The low power view at 57X allowed nice framing (my scope is a 10" f/5.7)... the stars were varied magnitudes in the cluster, and sharp pinpoints.

I finished up showing the Eskimo Nebula at 163X. I added an NPB filter, which showed the greatly dimmed central star, round bright disk in which the star is embedded, and a dim outer ring around the disk. Some people saw the object, some saw detail, some could not figure out what I was looking at - it was the "challenge" object of the night!

The last thing I did was to try splitting Procyon, but could easily tell there was enough scintillation to make it impossible. By then it was 11 p.m. the temps had dropped to the point of feeling chilly, and the crowds had disappeared. I packed up while visiting with some old buddies, and new friends I had met during the evening. I got to use my 10" scope, which is a rarity these days, and we had finally had a good (well, reasonable) night at Hogue Park, the first in several months.

A suggestion, if you're not looking at Saturn, you're missing out. It is spectacular right now with the rings at such a shallow angle. Get your gear out and check it out!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

The Big Freeze; A Cold Night In UMa

I'm home, and can finally feel all my toes... now to start peeling off the layers of cold weather clothes.

As I stepped out of the garage yesterday, to pile gear in my truck, the north wind blew right through me. A cold shiver had me thinking twice about my decision to drive to Willow Springs. Night temps were forecast around freezing, and this wind... but blue skies won.

Soon I was greeting Richard Navarrete at the meet-up spot in Morgan Hill, where I filled my thermos with Ethyl, topped off the tank, and headed for the hills. The drive south was easy, quick, and spectacular. The rolling hills were at peak green, wild mustard tall as corn painted the valley floor and spilled on up the sides of the nearby slopes, mixed with orange California Poppies. With podcasts as company, the empty two-lane quickly left the city behind, and led to adventures where the sky is literally the limit. Love the drive, love the place, love the sights, love where it all takes me.

Antelope Valley Road leaves the winding J14 pavement and leads into Willow Springs and Deep Sky Ranch over a one mile series of water-filled pot holes and ruts. I'm always gentle driving in, but enjoy making the morning ride out fun and exciting... Anyway... upon arriving at DSR, I found Steve Gottlieb at the gate and Peter Natscher pulled over to the side of the road. Soon Richard pulled up, to be joined shortly by Julien
Lecomte and Rogelio Bernal Andreo. We noted the 42F degree temp, and while setting up chatted about our observing buddy Greg moving to Arizona, DSR regular Marko Johnston bailing on us for an observing trip down under, and the conveniences of DARC Observatory. Our host Kevin Ritschel arrived and the group was complete. Venus was low in the west, with Sirius, Procyon and Mars rising to zenith in a line from the south. Just as I was noticed it, Kevin pointed out the Zodiacal Light, amazingly bright and wide, tilted toward the south, up into Taurus through the Pleaides. There was no hint of dew, and the wind had disappeared. This held the promise of a great night... M42 showed tons of detail even in full twilight. I climbed into the truck to gear-up for the cold, and by the time I got out, the winter Milky Way and hundreds of stars were out...

Early soft seeing would steady up during the night. Peter's plan was to mostly study planetary nebulae on the McNeil 450 list, with his 24" Starmaster. Julien worked on finishing the Herschel 400 with a 12" Meade LightBridge. Richard's 18" Obsession sat on an Osypowski Equatorial Platform, hunting Hicksons until late... Steve... well... he always has something unexpected, and last night his 18" Starmaster was showing Sharpless reflection nebulae, blasars, and other selected esoteric targets, such as the Integral Sign Galaxy. Kevin was testing GoTo on a 12" driven Dob... with gears that were reminiscent of the old Coffee Grinder LX-200's! Me... slumming a list of mixed targets in the chilly north, with my 18". Oh, almost forgot Rogelio... the lone imager! I believe he was shooting the Seagull Nebula, but we'll have to wait and see... it strikes me as ironic, that I, a visual observer who uses little in the way of technology in the hobby, have to describe non-visually in writing what I see, yet Rogelio, who relies heavily on technology, presents us with no words, and instead, something that is entirely visual!

So, during the night, we'd share views, take breaks, drink coffee (regular coffee) and talk... relaxed and friendly, a very good group. I especially enjoyed seeing Peter, who I've known for many years, but rarely get to observe with.

During the night, the temps dropped to 26F. I had all my layers on, chemical toe warmers in my Sorrels, fingerless gloves inside mittens with fold back fronts - in which I put toe warmers. By 1 a.m., the cold was enough. I couldn't feel my toes, the soles of my feet were icy, and I couldn't take notes. I closed shop, took off my boots and jacket, and crawled inside the truck, into my sleeping bag, thinking about frostbite, and about freezing...

I woke groggy in the morning to a big freeze outside... a layer of ice covered the green hills and gear, a white world under perfect blue skies.

Now that I'm home, and can finally feel all my toes... despite the temps, and the numbing, I have to say I had a great time. The coffee in my thermos is still hot as I write this.... maybe I just need more insulation.

Here are the targets I observed, in star-hopping order, and some sketchy notes about them...

Arp 207 Dra GX 1.2'x0.2' 15.4 09 31 06 +76 27 00 UGC 05050
18" 7mm bright pinpoint core, elongated NW/SE 3x2, about 1'x0.7'. Dim halo.

NGC 2985 UMa GX 5.5x5 10.6 09 50 24 +72 17 00
18" 7mm very bright core with a slightly brighter nucleus embedded. Brightness drops off rapidly to a large dim halo, elongated mostly N/S and about 3'x2'.

M82 UMA GX 9.x4.0 9.5 09 55 54 +69 41 00 NGC 3034 Arp 337
18" 7mm very bright and mottled with dark intrusions near center of 8.5'x2.5' elongation, WSW/ENE. HII regions to E of center near crossing dark lane. With UHC, 3 obvious HII regions, two adjacent to dark intrusion, one to W and possibly one more at extreme W end.

NGC 2787 UMa GX 2x1.3 10.9 09 19 18 +69 12 00
18" 7mm large spiral NNW/ESE with large dim halo showing hints of spiral structure. Core is bright, small, and shows chaotic form, or perhaps very tightly wound spiral arms in the core. Approx 3'x2'.

M81 UMA GX 21.0x10.0 8.5 09 55 36 +69 04 00 NGC 3031
18" 12mm beautiful tight bright small core gradually decreasing in brightness along a mostly NW/SE elongation of about 20', with 10' width. Tenuous spiral arms distinctly evident on the SE edge, leading around E to NE. Spectacular galaxy, much in the way 47 Tucanae is for globulars. Dim spiral arm is also visible extending from NW and around the W side, separated widely by large black dark lane.

NGC 3077 UMa GX 2.3x1.9 10.9 10 03 18 +68 44 00
18" 7mm tiny dim pinpoint nucleus surrounded by a moderately bright 0.5' core that is mostly round but rather chaotic. Larger dim envelope seems to extend more to the E of the core, and about 2'x1.5' E/W

Arp 300 Uma GX 1.6'x1.0' 13.4 09 28 02 +68 25 00 UGC 05029
18" 7mm pair of galaxies oriented mostly E/W and close together, W is brighter and smaller, elongated mostly N/S, E galaxy is larger, more diffuse and more NE/SW elongation.

NGC 2976 UMa OC 10 8.5 09 47 12 +67 55 00
18" 7mm elongated 6'x2' with even brightness across entire galaxy. Very slight hint of small brighter core, or possibly HII embedded. Mottled. Bright. Elongated N/S.

N2814/20/I2458 UMa Trio 3.9 13.7:12.8:15.0 09 21 48 +64 18 00
18" 7mm - wonderful view of 3 edge on galaxies. Largest is E of the smaller two, elongated 3'x0.2' NW/SE, other two are almost perpendicular to largest at N/S, at 0.5'x0.1'. Larger galaxy nearby clearly visible. NGCs 2820, 2814 and IC 2458. NGC 2805 very nearby.

N 2805 UMa GX 6.3x4.8 11 09 20 20 +64 06 10
18" 7mm - large and clumpy. Dim, core shows best. At first appears core only, but soon lumps appear out away from core…. Arms? HII regions?'

N 2880 UMa GX 2.0x1.2 11.5 09 29 34 +62 29 27
18" 7mm small bright core with stellar nuclei, dim large extended disk mostly N/S at 2'x1'. Active galaxy?

NGC 2742 UMa GX 2.5x1 11.2 09 07 36 +60 29 00
18" 7mm elongated 4'x2.5', even brightness, mottled, E/W, perhaps a very faint stellar nucleus.

NGC 2768 UMa GX 2x1 10.5 09 11 36 +60 02 00
18" 12mm - stellar nucleus surrounded by a small bright elongated core. Elongated disk runs WNW/ESE about 3'x1.8' NW/SE.. Beautiful galaxy!

NGC 2950 UMa GX 1.3x.9 10.9 09 40 36 +58 51 00
18" 7mm - elongated galaxy WNW/ESE 2'x1'. Bright pinpoint nucleus in a small bright core that ends abruptly.

NGC 3079 UMa GX 8x1 11.2 10 02 00 +55 41 00
18" 7mm elongated N/S 7'x1', S 3' is brighter and mottled, and warped to W. Nice!

NGC 2841 UMa GX 6.4x2.4 9.3 09 22 00 +50 58 00
18" 7mm elongated 4'x2; mostly N/S with small bright core and dim stellar nucleus, dusty mottled appearance.

N2854/56/57 UMa Trio 10.6 13.0:13.1:12.3 09 24 30 +49 18 00 NGC 2857 = Arp 1 NGC 2854 = Arp 285
18" 7mm 2854 and 2856 are very similar small bright elongated galaxies, perpendicular to each other. 2857 is large, dim and diffuse.

HCG 041 UMA Hickson 1.5x0.3 13.6 09 57 35 +45 13 48 UGC 05345
18" 7mm 2 bright ones show. End of notes. Freezing. No toes, no fingers. Bed time.

California Poppy image by Steve Loos...