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Log, Aug 9, 2002

98 people. The weather was on everyone's mind because our Clear Sky Clock predicted that it would become so hazy that viewing would be impossible by 10 or 11 PM. It didn't fail us tonight and we had clear skies until the last of us left for home. However the atmosphere was already picking up a good deal of moisture, which in turn created skies which were brighter than usual. Early on, I doubted that we get much past a 2 or 3 on the FDO Highly Precise Totally Subjective Sky Scale. At its best it was better than a 4 and maybe even a 5. You could make out many of the Messier objects by eye.

We had a sizable crowd inside and out. In the parking lot seven scopes and form from large binoculars to two big dobs (20" and 17.5") were in use. The star identification session was more active than usual with large groups several times in the evening.

The telescope decided to give us pointing problems. We rushed through a realignment because of the long lines. Long after everyone had gone and I was very tired I tried to align the telescope yet again but all I succeeded in doing was to guarantee that I will have to do it next time.

Mars and Mercury were just above the horizon but lost in the haze and clouds at sunset. Venus was up for at least 45 minutes before we displayed M4, M8, M17 and NGC6544.

-Les Coleman

Leslie Coleman
Author:
Leslie Coleman
Entry Date:
Aug 9, 2002
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Leslie Coleman's Log
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