Pit n Pole Tonight, September 30th 2011

Hello!!!! If your interested and not attending a college football game tonight, there will be about 4 or 5 of us out at Pit n Pole tonight. Forecast looks for clouds over the mountains that will dissipate after the sun goes down and the valley floor is clear and should remain clear with an occasional cloud now and then. So come on out and join us for an evening of viewing before the moon is too big.

Here are the directions with links to pictures. The link is to an earlier post on my blog. Hope some of you come out even if you don't have a scope and you just bring a chair, sit, let us do the star hopping and you share our views in the eyepiece.



Observing Session September 24th, 2011 Rush Valley

As I stated in my previous post, this last weekend there was an RV parked at the Pit n Pole site where I normally observe with RV's and they stayed through the weekend. So I headed down 2 miles to the Pony Express Marker and the MesoNet Weather Rod next to the marker and turned south on a dirt road. On Saturday I think I began to turn the corner on this pneumonia as I began to feel better and am so much better today as I write this.

This road took me to the top of a ridge where I could see the Pit n Pole site and I estimated I was up about 300 to 500 feet above the Pit n Pole location. Why is that important? The Pit is a decent site for a quick four hour session come fall and winter. I saw the Horsehead Nebula there twice in the winter from its location. However, because it is next to an ancient lake, dew can really come up. This new site provides an opportunity to get above that. So I thought I would share some images of the location. The only drawback is that it is used as a target practice area and there are lots of rifle and shotgun shells around, more than what I find at the Pit. It is also much more dusty than the Pit but then again, it is a desert.

This image is taken right after I turned off the Pony Express main road and onto the dirt road. I passed a photographer and a young couple that looked like they were taking their engagement pictures. I went really slow by them as I didn't want to dust their suit and dress. She was a rather stunning young woman and he was equally as handsome. They should make a fine pair.

Next shows the increase in elevation as I approached the lip of the ridge. Yes, the road is bumpy, has groves and one has to be careful if your in a car.

Right before I go up to the top of the ridge and to the observing area.

Here you can see my shadow as I take a picture facing southeast.

Back in the short distance you can see the ridge line that I came over and this is where there is a nice wide turnout where people target shoot but where there is more than enough room to set up and observe.

This is from the edge of the ridge that I drove over and if you click on the picture and make it larger, you can see the photographer, the young woman and man that were taking pictures. You can also make out the road and the Pony Express Monument/Marker and the tower that is the Mesonet Weather Station.

The white object in the middle of this image is the RV at the Pit n Pole location, providing a reference to where that site is from this one.

Another view of Pit n Pole from the site. This time I zoomed in with the tiny digital camera.

Here you can see the pull out from the main dirt road. It forms a Y here and the left branch circles around the area and back to the main road. You can set up on the edge of the branch or in the central area which is what I did, trying to cut down on the dust.

The observing area looking west. The dried sage and brush did help to keep dust down and it was rather flat here. I got .4 and a .5 warp here on the intelliscope.

Looking south from the main road next to the observing area.

Scope set up, collimated and ready for a night of observing! Looking north.

Scope ready to go looking south to south-west.

Here comes the night!


Now to the night of observing. On this night, it was simply me and Jorge and we both went to work on the objects we were going to observe and/or photograph. I am going to list my objects and some may be out of order, so please forgive my sloppiness on this post. Two the sketches on the PN's are posted correct here but the information on their sketch is wrong. I will be updating and correcting that this weekend.

On Friday I mentioned I observed NGC 7635, the Bubble Nebula and NGC 23 a Galaxy in Pegasus.

1. NGC 7635 The Bubble Nebula. Date: 9/23/11. Time: 11:15p.m. MDT or 05:15 UT on 9/24/11. Location: Pony Express Monument Hill South; Conditions: Clear, cool; Antoniadi II; Constellation: Cassiopeia; Reflection Nebula; Magnitude: 10.0; Size: 15' x 8'; Instrument: XX14i; Eyepiece 10mm Pentax XW; Filter: Ultrablock Narrowband.

The Bubble showed itself very well tonight and was easily seen next to its very bright star. SW to SE portion of the Bubble is brighter with the SW the brightest and fades away to the SE. NW somewhat bright and getting darker as you curve around there. Wonderful object as always.

2. Object: NGC 23; Date: 9/24/11; Time: 12:25p.m. MDT; Location: Pony Express Monument Hill South; Conditions: Clear, cool. Seeing: Antoniadi II; Constellation: Pegasus; Instrument: XX14i; Eyepiece: 14mm Pentax XW and 10mm Pentax XW;

Small galaxy with a very bright inner core surrounded by diffusion. Some mottling on the diffusion. 13th magnitude star near the core. Nothing spectacular. No sketch made.

3. Object: NGC 6445 The Box Nebula; Constellation: Sagitarrius; September 24th, 2011; Conditions: Clear, Mild; Location: Pony Express Hill South; Seeing: Antoniadi II; Planetary Nebula; Magnitude: 11.2; Size: 2.8' x 0.9; Instruments: XX14i; Eyepiece: 7mm Pentax XW; Filter: Ultrablock NB;

Rather bright, close to a double star system to the northwest. PN is next to a 12th to 13th magnitude star and two more stars above the PN. PN is bright, has two rounded dumbbells/lobes on each end, with some darkness in the middle of the PN. NW lobe is the brighter of the two lobes. Nice PN to revisit since my last visit about a year ago.

5. Object: NGC 6210 PN in Hercules; Location: Pony Express Monument South Hill; Seeing: Antoniadi II: Magnitude: 8.8; Instrument: XX14i; Eyepiece: 7mm Pentax XW; Filter Ultrablock NB;

Round shape planetary at first, then more oval. Shows a tinge of emerald/green to it. NW edge is irregular in shape making it oval in shape, not round. Central star is not seen at first, averted vision seems to pop the central star but I need a confirmation on that. Outer halo is somewhat visible. Bright star to the NW with a triangle asterism below the PN.

6. Object: NGC 6572 PN in Ophiuchus; September 24th, 2011; Location: Pony Express Marker South Hill; Conditions: Clear, mild; Antoniadi II; Magnitude: 8.1; Instrument: XX14i; 7mm Pentax XW; Filter: Ultrablock NB

Emerald color to this PN without the filter. Outer shell surrounding the bright planetary nebula. The central star is not visible due to the brightness of the inner portion of the PN. Fun object to observe.

7. Object: NGC 6778 PN in Aquila; September 24th, 2011; Time: 10:10p.m. MDT; Location: Pony Express Monument, South Hill; Conditions: Clear, cold; Seeing: Antoniadi I; Magnitude: 12.3; Instrument: XX14i; Eyepiece: 10mm Pentax XW; Filter: Ultrablock NB;

PN forms an equilateral triangle with 2 stars. The PN is bright, though small, bright central region but no central star is visible. There is a fainter halo that surrounds a brighter inner halo that is evident. I.E. it is if the PN has an outer, fainter shell and a bright inner shell.

8. Object: NGC 6778 PN in Aquila: September 24th, 2011; Location: Pony Express Marker Hill South; Time: 10:55p.m. MDT; Seeing: Antoniadi II to I; Mag. 12.3; XX14i, 10mm Pentax XW; Ultrablock NB Filter:

PN is rather small, has a faint outer shell followed by a brighter halo with the central star visible . Take higher power and good conditions to observe the central star. 330x to 660x showed the star tonight.

9. NGC 7293 Helix Nebula; PN in Aquarius; September 24th, 2011; Location: Pony Express Monument: South Hill; Conditions: Clear and Fair; Seeing: Antoniadi II; Mag. 7.3; Size: 17.57'; XX14i; 14mm Pentax XW; Ultrablock NB Filter

This object is definetly very large and the filter is necessary even at a dark site to bring out the detail on it and to pop the PN. Shows a bright outer ring with darker diffusion in the middle. Brighter portion of the ring is on the northern end. The central star is visible at 13.5 mag. along with about 6-7 other stars. I did two sketches of this object.

10. Object: NGC 7158 Spiral Galaxy in Pegasus; September 25th, 2011; Time: 12:30 a.m. MDT; Location: Pony Express Monument Hill South; Seeing: Antoniadi II, clear and cold: Mag. 12.8; XX14i; 10mm Pentax XW

Very small round galaxy. Did not show in the Panoptic 27mm because it is so small, but the 14mm popped it out. Really a faint fuzzy with no structure, no core, no mottling or other structure is evident.

11. Object: NGC 7177 Spiral Galaxy in Pegasus; Date: September 25th, 2011; Time: 12:10 a.m. MDT or 06:10 UT; Location: Pony Express Monument Hill South; Clear Cold: Seeing: Antoniadi II; Mag. 11.4; XX14i; Eyepiece: 14mm Pentax XW

Very faint and small galaxy that has a very bright core surrounded by diffusion. There is a 12th magnitude star to the NW. 2 stars above it. Not much to see, elongated WSW to ENE.


Friday Review and Saturday

Here is an image that Jorge took last night. I'm on the far left and at this time was sketching NGC 7635. Jorge is sitting. Craig is looking at a map and Cory is looking at a list or an atlas I believe. Thus the red lights were out. Sagittarius is quickly fading into the west if you look close enough. It's truly not a bad location for being about 50 minutes from home.

Well last night was an excellent night. Met a local ATMer and fellow amateur named Cory. He was out with his son. Unfortunately but as it often is, fortunately the location at Pit n Pole was taken by an RV. So I drove down to the Pony Express Monument and went just south of there. I noticed a car on the south side of the Pony Express Monument so I drove and met Cory and his son. Cory has an excellent home built 8 inch scope and it was a pleasure to spend the evening with him observing.

My friend Craig came out and used my 10 inch scope and my other friend Jorge was there with his 10 inch dob. I showed Cory some of the basic Messier objects in the 14 and then showed him the difference that filters make in viewing nebula like the Swan, the Lagoon, the Trifed etc. I then got started on redoing my observation of the NGC 7635 or the Bubble Nebula from a year ago. I spent over an hour observing and sketching it and will process that sketch this next week and get it on here. I am very happy with it.

After this I started on my Herschel II list and started on some galaxies in Pegasus. More on that on another post. By 12:15 I was getting really tired from still getting over pneumonia and so I looked at the Pleiades and at Jupiter and then packed up. I am heading out again tonight for awhile and will focus on my list I have prepared and some Herschel 400 II items.

On my bookmarks on the left is a Google Map that shows my most used observing sites. I will be at the Pony Express South one tonight if the Pit is still occupied by the RV. It is a good site as it is about 300 to 500 feet above Pit n Pole and that means less dew forming (not that dew is an issue right now out there at all). It does mean if there is a breeze you pick that up and it did get into the low 40's last night. So as always, dress warm for the desert. If you want to come out tonight feel free to do so.


Pit n Pole for Friday and Saturday

I've been very sick of late with this pneumonia but I got cleared by the doctor today that I can go out as long as it is local. I was going to go and help my friend Mat with a private star party tonight but alas, it is too high up and too far away for the sleeping aid I have to help me get over this. So tonight I know that myself and several others will be out at the Pit n Pole location to observe and your welcome to come back. I was going to go to Lakeside on Saturday, but based on my doctor's input, and if I am still feeling up to it, I am going to go to the Pit on Saturday as well. Come join us if you want some decent dark skies and a chance to say good-bye to the summer objects and a welcome to fall, since it is fall!

XX14i at the Pit

Fall near home and the colors this year look FANTASTIC! Great red maple's this year! Fall is my favorite season.


Articles on Supernovae

The image above is by David Hardy of Well I've been sick these last several weeks, I decided tonight to just have some fun surfing the net and finding some articles and animations that some may like to look at regarding supernova, especially Type Ia as 2011fe is. SN 2011fe is cool because it is the brightest supernovae to occur in the last 40 years. From what I have read initially, this SN as a Type Ia has spectra lines that have indicted this may be a SN caused by a collision of two white dwarfs, or it is quite possible that the companion Red Giant is too small to pick up. I think more lean to the second theory. No progenitor though has been discovered on Hubble images for where the SN occurred. Again, this may be because the progenitor was fainter than the images could capture.

NOVA online has a nice walk through of a Typical Type Ia SN. Here is a link to the NOVA site.

AstronomyNow online magazine has a nice animation and article located here, of a Type IA SN being caused by two white dwarfs that are orbiting each other and then eventually collide. It is a nice article to read and learn from.

Finally, the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center has a nice overview article with images of both Type Ia and Type II supernova. Here is the link if you want to hunt that information down.

You may wonder why I am not going on in the post to explain about Supernova or a Supernovae. The reason is simple. The information is out there and I think the links do a better job than I do in explaining it.

Here is the AAVSO site regarding SN 2011fe. Shows that many amateurs have participated in the making of the light curve. You can still help if you want by going to the site, reading the info, observing and reporting your estimated magnitude. I hope some of you get out and enjoy the sky. Tonight is one of the best nights this year and here I am stuck in bed trying to recover. Hopefully your skies are clear and you get some great observing in.

Here is a movie of a white dwarf that has been accreting matter from its Red Giant companion and that leads to a nova outburst. Here is the link to the movie.

Finally, here is a good article with references on the causes of Type IA with their strength and weaknesses of each theory.


Some Fall Observing Targets

Well, I have full blown pneumonia. My fault since I kept pushing it while I had bronchitis. I should have taken a few days off from work and rested. Now I have no choice. So I won't be observing for a week or so until the antibiotics (yes, plural) take hold. So I thought I would share a few observing items that you may enjoy doing from some other sites I visit.

Autumn Double Star Tour by PJ Anway located here. This is a nice tour of bright double stars with finder charts and a good tour to do with the moon going full tonight and being bright. Probably can be done in a light polluted zone as well.

With fall coming in a couple of weeks here is the list of fall planetary nebula.

Most people know or may not know that fall is excellent galaxy time. Here are some of the nicer ones:

NGC 253
NGC 404
NGC 488
NGC 891
NGC 925
NGC 1023
Persus Cluster
NGC 7331 and friends if your at a dark site
Hickson 92 (Stephan's Quintet)
NGC 6946
NGC 7217
7619, 7623, 7626
NGC 7814

Feel free to leave a comment and add to the objects


Wolf Creek Observing September 2nd, 2011

I always look forward to going to Wolf Creek to observe and this was no exception. Well on Friday, September 2nd, 2011, after getting off of work I came home, changed for a cold night and then loaded up the Pathfinder for what I hoped was an excellent night of observing. The drive up took some time as there was a stalled truck on I-80 in the far right (slow) lane and it hadn't been able to move to the shoulder. Then with all the traffic heading out for the weekend it got slow merging off o I-80 to I-40. Once I got on the highway to Kamas it was smooth sailing and I made good time until I ran into this on the way up to the summit:

There was a large herd that crossed the highway here and it took about 10 minutes for me to wait for all them to cross. So I snapped a picture, one I am sure others around the U.S. and the world can relate with at times. It was fun to watch the Hampshires and Suffolks cross the road. The question I guess, is why were they crossing the road? Because the first sheep did and they just follow, and the herder had his portable cabin just up the road so I am sure he was leading them back to that general area.

I got up to the campground, pulled in and took the road up. There was a family of 3 with 2 dogs, one being a cocker spaniel that was muddy that I had to let pass by. I sped up and saw dust just ahead of me and I thought it must be my friend Mat. As I got up to the ridge, sure enough, Mat was just pulling in. We picked our spot out, after commenting how high the grass is this year form all the moisture. After setting up I collimated and then waited. The moon was up so I decided to look at it and try using the used Paracorr 1 I got from a friend (hi Jeff). I messed around with it for about 40 minutes and gave up on it. I then put it away and will take it out I hope some night this week to play with it in the backyard. I observed the moon for about 20 minutes, and then climbed into the back of the Pathfinder and laid down to rest as I was tired. Mat and I met a new friend, Mike Taylor who came up from Heber with only a 30 minute ride or so! Lucky him!!! If I lived only 30 to 35 minutes form Wolf Creek I am not sure if my family would find me around two moon. Then again, there is that thing this year called the weather, which has just stunk.

Here is dusk at Wolf Creek. My 14 inch is pointing at about a 45 degree angle with Mat's 16 inch vertical.

As I was resting, Mat got to work and went observing. I heard him showing Mat some of the brighter Messier so I climbed out and started looking at the Lagoon, Trifed, Swan, Eagle, M22, some off the way globs in Sagitarrius from the Herschel list and then went up top for the Veil Nebula. I realized this night that with the Panoptic 27mm I need to get a 2 inch narrowband filter for it. The Veil, both parts showed wonderful this night. I then looked at several objects in Mat's scope including M27 which looked good, but in the 5mm Radian it moved just too fast for me through the FOV. I think the better view was at slightly lower power.

I went back to the Pathfinder to rest as the moon was still too bright and I had made a major mistake in my planning for this night, a huge rookie mistake. I had plan for a night in Aquilla chasing Planetary Nebula and to go after a few others in the general area. I had also mapped out a night chasing Herschel II objects in Sagitarrius. My problem is that these objects were not met to be this night. The moon stayed up until 10:30p.m. and by then I went chasing other PN's on the list first, thinking I had time. We all went to M101 to view the SN which I sketched, and it ended up being the only sketch I made that night. Here it is and west is up. I tried to capture onl the major stars in the field. Overall I was pretty content with this sketch.

I didn't mark the SN in my sketch but if you look near the core to the SE is a bright field star. Go directly across and you will see a very bright star that is the middle star in a slight off field of 3 stars. The middle one is the SN. Here is an image to assist:

One item I see mentioned whenever a SN is found that is rather bright as 2011fe or 2011dh is the notion that in the Milky Way we are long overdue for a supernova of our own. They state correctly that the last three visual SN in the Milky Way that were visible were in 1054 which Messier 1 or the Crab Nebula is the remnant; in 1572 Tycho's Star and 1604 which is called Kepler's Star. We know about 1680 Cassiopeia A went off though we haven't had verifiable recorded observation of that explosion unless John Flamsteed's observation of 3 Cass. was it. Some estimate that the star that formed Cassiopeia A SNR was so huge it bled off much of its material before exploding and that material in form of a nebula and other dust covered the explosion.

So this myth occurs that there are no other SN in the Milky Way since 1680 because we haven't seen them. I would point out that in 2008 the Chandra Xray Observatory and the Very Large Array confirmed a SNR, G1.9+0.3, which is only 140 years old (see this NASA article), much younger than Cassiopeia A SNR. The explosion was not visible because the progenitor star was near the central region of the Milky Way and the amount of dust hide the explosion. Based on the rate of SN that means that we should have had 10 other supernova go off since Cassiopeia A with G1.9+0.3 being one of them. I wonder how many of those eight to ten supernova were hidden by dust or nebula? We talked about this on our observing evening and I put forth the notion that the next visual supernova in the Milky Way probably won't be Betelgeuse or a known and expected star, but a star we are not looking for or a white dwarf that explodes as a Type Ia. This has made me speculate and wonder if any professional astronomers have attempted to do a survey of white dwarfs that have white dwarf companions and/or red giant companions in the Milky Way in an attempt to not only identify possible Type Ia candidates for the Milky Way that could be visible from Earth, but to also help understand the process by which Type Ia's SN occur. Still much to learn there from what I can gather. I'd love to participate in a survey like that.

Here you can see SNR G1.0+0.3 as a supernova remnant and its location. Notice all the dust around it. This is taken from this NASA article.

Back to the observing now. By now the Sagittarius items were getting to low to chase for me. I spent over an hour on PK 38-25.1 and I got the right star field down, but found I did not have a detailed enough printed chart to get there. One positive is that Mat let me use his 14mm Explore Scientific 100 degree EP and that was an eye opener. I took my glasses off, letting them dangle from their sunglass straps and put my eye right into the eyepiece. I know why they call this a space walk feeling. I had to shift my head to take in the field. I need a few more views with some decent and faint objects to take in the effect though.

As I was finished with PK 28-25.1 the wind started to come up. The pines started moving and we went from Antoniadi I up top and Antoniadi II as you came down to Antoniadi III up top and IV to V as you came into the muck (below 35 degrees). I tried for a few more items, but the scope was started to vibrate in the wind. It was now about 1:20a.m. so we decided to pack it up. By 2:00 Mike had left, Mat and I were packed and laying in the back of either my Pathfinder for me, or his van for Mat.

I pulled a few items that I'll share here. One, I forgot to turn off a dome light in the Pathfinder so at one point I opened the door and the light came on. Mat had gone to Bryce and at Bryce people were having that issue and finally were told if they couldn't operate their cars to stay away from them by the ranger in charge. So anytime we now do something causing white light to appear, we call it "Pulling a Bryce."

Then in the middle of the night, I awoke and had to take care of some quick business. I forgot my car was lock and if it is locked and the door opens the alarm goes off. Yep, 3:30a.m. and the car alarm goes off. I got it off quickly but boy was I embarrassed. I slept until 6:00a.m. when I usually get up and couldn't sleep so got out, loaded the rest of my gear up, ate breakfast, took some snapshots I'll share here, and then left. I hope I didn't offend Mat. He was still asleep I think when I left but I felt I needed to get home as my daughter needed me that afternoon. Here are the pictures I took of the summit area at Wolf Creek.

Dawn at Wolf Creek looking east to southeast from the observing site. The GPS put it at 9912 feet above sea level.

Wolf Creek looking south across a canyon:

Wolf Creek from the observing site looking southwest.

Duchene Ridge looking west from the observing site.

So the night was an okay night. I have no Herschel 400 to go after until Spring now so that list is done. I am starting on the H400 II and did get in the Veil Nebula, both parts, the portion of the Lagoon Nebula in the list, and the Crescent. I was going to sketch the Crescent but it was just to windy. Next time I hope.

Lessons learned: One, when I am close to a change of seasons I need a current list for the evening, and a list that includes items from constellations that will be up later that night to maximize my observing time. Dumb mistake on my part. I'm rusty from not observing four to eight times a month! Two, no more "Pull a Bryce" mistakes. Three, make sure the finder charts I print have enough detail to star hop from. Another dumb mistake I made. I had the opportunity to go on Saturday again but was too tired and to be quite honest, my health isn't well and things are rather stressed on the home front. I'm getting over bronchitis and then today, my problem tooth as I was flossing came flying off and so did the buildup underneath it. I can see the gutcha (?) or gum like cement material they used to seal up the root canal I had done on it. That has to wait to get fixed until Tuesday at 8:00a.m. but he recommended no dirty area. Tomorrow night I am going to do some double star and lunar observing in the backyard and hopefully try sketching one crater tomorrow.

I don't know if anyone out there has ever felt a let down as you finished (well almost except for my April and May targets) a list like the H400 and I am doing the H400 II by constellation so I can simply observe the evening in just two or three constellations. I hope that opens up some pleasant discoveries. That and I am going to do the planetary nebula program without the AL book because I love PN's (it is ridiculous in this day and age of computers and the internet to make someone pay for a book. List the items on a PDF or Excel format and then let people go for it). I hope the weather is good for the new moon phase later this month!


Observing for September 2nd 2011 Wolf Creek Here we come!

There is the Clear Sky Chart for Wolf Creek and tomorrow night, Friday, September 2nd looks outstanding! Humidity is around 45% to 50% with temps getting down to the low 40's. Skies look to be the best we've had in a LONG time. I feel a LONG weekend of observing coming on. So here is the schedule:

Friday: Wolf Creek Utah. I should arrive around 7:00p.m. and will be setting up and collimating then cooling. While the scope is cooling I will be taking a 45 minute nap in the back of my Pathfinder. Please don't disturb during this time! :o)

Saturday Night: Probably either Lakeside or Pit n Pole, leaning towards Pit n Pole so I can be home Sunday morning.

Sunday Night: Pit n Pole because I have a family outing on Monday.

So if your interested in using my 10 inch scope you must contact me by 3:30p.m. tomorrow (I am working/teaching so I won't have the phone on until after 2:15p.m.) I will give a quick run down on how to use the scope and provide a 32mm Q70 and a 17mm Stratus to use in the 10 inch. Same thing if you want to go to Lakeside or to Pit n Pole and use the 10 inch scope at one of those two locations.

If your coming and haven't been to a dark site like these here are some things you need to know.

Please plan to arrive before it is dark. This helps you not to disturb night vision of those who are observing or are imaging.

No white lights! Red light is the key and it needs and must be pretty dim. You'll be surprise at how much you can see when you are dark adapted.

Whatever you pack in for food or drink you pack out and alcohol doesn't work at a star party. No fires either and don't go in and out of your car if your lights come on automatically and you haven't covered them up so the white light interferes with people observing. Last thing there are no bathrooms in the observing area (nearest one is about 1.5 miles away). Anyway one last item. The low 40's degree F can be very cool, because when you are observing your very docile and the only time I sweat is unloading and loading. So dress warm and bring layers. It is easier to take off some layers then not to have anything to put on. Bring some warm under clothers, then layer on top of that cotton (I use the hunters military grade long johns that draw the moisture away from my body and legs) then you can put wool and cotton on top of that. See my post on winter clothing. A good pair of silk socks with wool socks over them and a good hat traps heat in. DO NOT WEAR SHORTS, you'll freeze and head home earlier than you would otherwise.

What to expect if you have never been? A tremendous view of the summer Milky Way, many objects are observable naked eye and in a scope, details you'll never see in either the Salt Lake Valley or even in the desert because your up at 10,000 feet. I hope to see some of you up at Wolf Creek or at Lakeside on Saturday or Pit n Pole on Sunday.