Petroglyphs in the cave
After dusting off our hiking boots the group headed to Dr Mark and Kelly's house for a bbq/potluck dinner. We were joined by Herb and Diane Conrad about this time. After watching the orange glow of the Western sunset, it was a scramble to set up the 4 telescopes in the driveway dark site.
Our dark site for the evening was at 1,425 ft near the top of Palisades. Temperatures were in the low 70's and winds of 6mph and were totally blocked by the Eureka palm landscaping. At the 1,425ft level we were just at or above the marine layer, identified by Craig Combes. The seeing was fair which Doug Summers, confirmed with viewing of select binary stars. Weather cooperated and we had clear skies for the star party. Dr. Mark had remedied the nearby street light by removing its fuse. Ahh, darkness!!
Club member telescopes included: Dr Marks 8" vintage Schmidt Cassegrain, Kyle's State of the art GoTo 8" Schmidt-Cassegrain, Craig's optically perfect 10" f/6 Dobsonian, and Doug's rocket launcher,..... I mean, 22" Dobsonian, Deep space observatory-in-a-car telescope! (We used a two-step ladder to get to the eyepiece!)
The club members focused in on local and deep space objects providing views and information to the club members, Dr. Fedder, local teachers, surgical assistants and therapists (Kelly and Dr Mark's friends) who are eager students of astronomy all enjoyed.
Among the night sky treasures enjoyed -- Jupiter, The great Andromeda Galaxy & its satellite galaxies, The Swan Nebula, Spiral Galaxy, Pinwheel Galaxy, Cat's Eye Nebula, Ring Nebula, Dumbbell Nebula, open star clusters, many binary stars that show different color temps, and so much more....
As a result, all agreed that the afternoon/evening was a total success and that the West Hawaii Astronomy Club is the club to be envied. Does it get any better?