Observation Log 10/18/06: Comet SWAN (C2006 M4)

comet_swan_cook_th.jpgThe comet was setting in the skyglow and sunset to the WNW, but I definitely picked out the faint fuzzy of the coma. I wasn’t even expecting to see it really, so it was a doubly nice surprise. I rechecked a few times, star-hopping from Alkaid, past Boötes’ “pipe” (using Rey’s outlines) and between Seginus and Nekkar, with HIP72582 and HIP72469 pointing right at it. No doubt, there it was, with only Canon 10×30 Image Stabilizing binoculars binoculars.

I didn’t even mention this. A few nights ago, that I couldn’t sleep and my wife was away on business, so at 3AM I went outside in my pajamas and spotted Kemble’s Cascade, the Andromeda Galaxy, the Orion Nebula, and spent a little time aimlessly wandering through the skies with my Canon IS 10x30s. I came back in after 30 minutes and went right out! What a great way to relax before sleep! The only downside was my neighbor’s Halloween decorations, which must be programmed to make spooky, “Mwah hah heh heh heh Aaaarrrrggghhhhhh OooooooOOOOOOoooooooo” noises every so often. That kind of freaked me out the first time I heard it. It made me glad I had about five pounds of metal and glass on the end of a 30″ neck strap, just in case I need to swing it around, you know?

(Comet image by Tony Cook, Leeds, UK)

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