Happiness is a clear dark night

Tonight I got in the first real night of observing since a series of equipment upgrades this April. Yes, it took until June to actually get in a clear dark night. The views of Saturn don’t really count, as I was doing those with plenty of moon. There were lots of really great views tonight from off my deck, but the thing that blew my socks off was the 2 Globular Clusters in Hercules (M13 and M92). The combination of a laser alignment tool for my optics, light baffling inside my scope, and a new focuser that lets me really dial in a tight focus, made these objects just amaze me.

You are looking at a cloud of stars, hundreds of thousands, that are the core of a galaxy eaten up by the milky way billions of years ago. But with all the improvements the number of individual stars you can make out in that cloud goes way up. They shine like jewel boxes in the sky. I just sat there in awe, and took in the night.

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