New from Katy, TX

New from Katy, TX

Postby christopher-plant » Thu Jul 16, 2020 5:05 pm

Hello all!

As you can tell from the title, I'm new. About two months ago, after watching a series on youtube about astronomy, I learned that you might be able to see the craters of the moon and the moons of Jupiter with a pair of binoculars. I figured, "why not?" So I picked up my goggle I use for bird watching, and the occasional hunt, and trained it towards the moon. I saw craters! Then towards Jupiter....I couldn't believe I could actually see the moons of Jupiter. Now you know the rest of the story. Bought a celestron 8 avx. Saw Jupiter's red spot and the lines of the rings of Saturn.

Then I went out to Weimar and took a spot on the side of a back road (hopefully not trespassing). After ordering a kit to attach my canon t6i, I figured, "why not?" Pointed the scope towards andromeda for a 30 second exposure, with the scope not really polar aligned.

Saw a fuzzy yellow spot with discernible arms...wow. Invested in a qhy 224, attached two focal reducers, motorized zoom, eq6 mount, and guide scope (for polar align tool in sharp cap)

Now it's mid July, I'm in Big Bend right now in an RV and capturing beautiful galaxies, nebula (raw image of m27 is below), and even Venus and Mars!

I'm pretty excited to be a member. I'm thankful to one of he employees from Land, Sea and Sky for recommending this society. I can't remember his name but he is also a member.

What really got me hooked into joining was that HAS has an observatory near Columbus. No more potential trespassing or awkward conversations with farmers wondering why I have a bunch of gear in front of one of the side entrances to their ranch (and then hearing them say it was really cool and "ok, I won't bother you any more.") :oops:

Clear Skies!

-Chris

P.S. Where do I take the orientation online? I can't find the link anywhere.
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christopher-plant
 
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Re: New from Katy, TX

Postby rene-gedaly » Fri Jul 17, 2020 9:27 am

Wow, Chris! Fab photo. Also, WELCOME. Now to your question. First, log into the website. Then, scroll towards the bottom of this page: https://www.astronomyhouston.org/about/has-observatory. You'll see a big blue button that says START YOUR TRAINING. Click it, take the quiz, the observatory director (also a Chris, Chris Ober) will see you've passed and do some stuff, and then send you an email which you can take from there to find the map to the dark site and the gate code to let yourself in whenever you like. Cool, right? Hey, the dark site will cure what ails you, imo. Wish I could get out there but I'm booked through the summer. ENJOY
Rene Scandone Gedaly, Forum Moderator
Membership Chair, Texas 45-Visual, Observatory Trainer
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Re: New from Katy, TX

Postby christopher-plant » Fri Jul 17, 2020 10:21 am

Thank you so much for the compliment and warm welcome. I've taken the quiz (failed once, lol) and looking forward to the email!
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