May 19, 2014

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Smoky Moon

image by Steve Thornton, Murrieta, California

Having the first clear night in a few weeks I was out observing with my 6" Intes MK-67. Steve's image (which immediately reminded me of a Frederick Church painting) of the rising Moon shot through clouds of smoky ash in the aftermath of recent California brush fires reminds me of both Mars and Jupiter as I observed them tonight. Mars' hue was about the same as the bright ochre color shown below the Moon in this image, but more brilliant. Jupiter had almost no color, just two smudgy dark equatorial bands. I see so many great images I expected to see festoons and dozens of bands as captured by Damian Peach and other excellent imagers, but I didn't. In fact I saw so little that I wonder if my eyes are losing their acuity (even though I see well at a distance)? But the Moon - not seen tonight because the eastern sky is blocked - always seems sharp when I observe. Is the Moon the only thing in the cosmos that never disappoints no matter what telescope or eyes you have?

Chuck Wood

Technical Details
Nikon D300 with a 70-200 f/ 2.8 zoom. Exposure was 2 seconds at f/5.6 with an ISO of 400.

Yesterday's LPOD: Deep Floors

Tomorrow's LPOD: One Small Step


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