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Friday, May 15th, 2009
Since I have to be up at the crack of dawn to help a friend.......GoKart races at Portland International Raceway, I decided not to attempt any imaging tonight.   Instead, I hauled out my 12" Dob.   First, my collimation was off, and then it took a while to get the scope to settle down to the outside temperature.   The garage was about 75 degrees.
 
Once the scope cooled, Saturn was a fine view @ 250x, although I could only see 2 moons.   The rings are becoming a thinner line all the time, but I could still make out the front to back separation.
 
M81 & M82 were not impressive.....bright enough, but no detail to speak of.   M13 was nice as usual at 150x.....never tire of looking at it.  I had trouble getting a sharp focus on M57.  It was best at 56x.   
 
I am not sure how good the seeing was......think I may still have some collimation issues.   Part of my problem was the street light across the street.   I usually position myself behind a large tree in our front yard, but my wife had parked her car on that side of the driveway....and I was too lazy to move it.   Anyway, that very bright light was in my eyes.......so my night vision was bad the whole time.   Frustrating!
 
I am afraid that the dark skies in central Oregon have spoiled me for observing anywhere else.   The views here near the city pale (in the best of locations) in comparison to the views from there.  I hate the idea of having to pack up my gear and drive a couple of hours or more to find good viewing, but that's what it's coming to.   Light polution is getting steadily worse.





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