An eventful night. Spent the early hours at an outreach 'star party' at Skinner Montessori school in NE Vancouver......was there as a favor to Stan Seeberg and his wife. There were approx. 50 school kids [ages 7-11] and their parents. I looked at it as an obligation, but I ended up enjoying the evening. The kids were well behaved......many of them had never looked through a telescope before and couldn't get enough. The parents were as amazed as the kids. Of course, Saturn was the big hit of the evening. The seeing wasn't very good, but having no basis of comparison, all thought it was a wonderful sight. The ooous and ahhhhhs went on and on. I think everyone thanked me for being there about 6 times over.
Once back home, I had to take advantage of the warm weather and clear sky. I set up my imaging equipment......but then struggled all night with the camera. I downloaded an updated version of 'Meade Autostar Suite' software a few days ago. I should have done a practice run with the new software. Nothing seemed to work the way I was used to it working.
Two hours of frustration did produce one image of the Ring nebula, M57. I used my 1325mm Mak-Cass and the Meade DSI color without a focal reducer.....to get a little bit of size on the Ring. I had forgotten just how small it appears. I wanted to try for M104, the Sombrero galaxy, but by that time it was approaching 2am and I was too tired to continue. Maybe tonight [5/16]