The Sirius area of the winter sky is spectacular! I woke up shortly after six am , looked out the window and wow! Orion and Canis Major was out. Could not resist the urge to go out and observe them before dawn started to appear. According to my star charts right now the six am sky is actually February's sky.
I took my Celestial Sampler book and notebook, telescope and binoculars and got to work on some Sirius observing.
I had a blast with the winter stars. I went inside and grabbed my Cosmic Challenge and polished off some winter sky challenges. Sirius has some amazing star clusters around it! Best thing? I was just wearing my pajama bottoms and a t-shirt! Had to throw on a hoodie but usually it is winter when this sky is observed. AWESOME! I am keeping track of my own Cosmic challenge From the book right here.
Last night around nine pm I went out with my binoculars. Here is last night's entry from my observing journal:
September 26,2011 60 degrees. 8:52pm - Deneb seems to look visibly brighter tonight, I'm thinking something is going on with it or maybe the cooler weather.
I've been studying the Pegasus area extra carefully with my star maps, now that I have my 12 inch dobsonian I want to hunt down everything in it. I found the extension stars from Markab to Enif. Very easy too see, found Enif and M15 to be in the same field of view in my binoculars.
Quite the stars to the right of Enif, Delphinus is showing off tonight! While I was in the area, I swung my binoculars to the Andromeda galaxy. I always just have to take a peek at that great big galaxy.
The star clusters I observed:
M41 Cr121 Also knows as Colinder 21
NGC 2362 Amazing view in my 12 inch dob! The blues were SO VIVID!
NGC 2423 Colorful!
Mel71 Also known as Melotte 71
M44 Stunning cluster
M93 M46 and M47 M67 NGC 2354
The planetary nebula's I observed:
NGC 2438 NGC 2440
The star systems I observed:
ADS6915 Triple star! ADS 6921 Quadruple star!