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NP101 in N. GA Mtn.s, Nirvana!!!

Started by Buck8one2, 09/18/2006 08:25AM
Posted 09/18/2006 08:25AM Opening Post
Hi folks
I'm still suffering Nirvana from this past weekend. I just spent the weekend up in the North GA mountains at a very dark site with my NP101 on a Gibraltar with a case of Naglers and I have to say I simply OD'd Friday night. From my usual location under the light dome of Atlanta and small hole above to see the sky where I can maybe get one constellation, then to get up there I was where I could actually see the and this huge chunk of sky, I was giddy. For me it was also a treat to to see the the northern parts of the sky so I had many new targets to find, however at times with so many stars visible, I actually got lost trying to find my way around putting all the constellations together in one big overhead picture. Once I got the big picture of things under control, it was like shooting fish in a barrel. Set the red dot of the Starbeam about where the target should be, look through the NP101 with a 26T5 and it was almost always in the field of view, put in a 13T6 to get a closer look and center it up and then go to another appropriate higher power as needed. It was one of those magical nights where everything fell into place, dark sky, excellent seeing, excellent equipment, and almost could not miss a target. At about 2:30 the dew got the best of me so I packed up and went to bed a happy man. Saturday night promised to be a bit better with a little less dew, except for a couple hunters with their blazing sun for a lantern. I politely asked them if they would mind turning it down a bit and invited them up for peek. They said they would and they did, but would be going to bed about 11:30, so it was not a big problem and I moved my vehicle to block their remaining light until 11:30. The dew was much better so I was still having a wonderful night until about 3:00 when I was about to pack up when I turned around to face the southeast and discovered Orion had just cleared a ridge (haven't seen Orion for a long time) and just after that the moon cleared a ridge in the east. By now it's 4am and I'm bone tired and ready for bed so I pack up, then crashed. With two unbelievable nights, and so many great views it's hard to pick a best view. However, if I had to pick one it would have to be either Andromeda with the 26T5 which filled the entire FOV or the Orion Neb in the 7T6, in both cases they seemed to stretch forever. Something I have never seen from my usual viewing location.
I've been in this hobby about 4.5 years and had many good nights. But I can state that it was easily the best weekend I've every had, where everything all fell together and everything worked for me perfectly.
PS: Now if I could only figure out how to get the NFS to let me live up there.