Saturday, 15 December 2012

Geminids, chockabloke, checking in!

As with the Perseids, bad weather on the night of maximum has been a bit of a blow this Geminid season. But, braving freezing weather I managed to get out and have short sessions with my neck achily cranked towards Gemini high in the South, and meteors have been around!

The thing I've noticed this year is that the slow moving, yellow orange beauties that are bright and leave a smoky trail as they meander somewhat across the sky, have not been around! The first Geminid I saw this year was like that, but the rest have been mainly short trailers in the vicinity of the radiant, and not many approaching mag 1.

The best night was the 12th. The skies cleared late on, and in what went on to be a -7 degree night in Grnatham nearby - car thermometers in town were reporting -5, I saw 9 Geminids in a 25 minute session before my hands (in two pairs of gloves) threatened to drop off.

And then, the skies went a murky sulfur street light orange on the night of maximum itself, while I had to endure 3 meteors a minute reports from 'Oop Naaaarth. Lucky so and sos!

Last night saw three Geminids in half an hour, but I did have binoculars clamped on my eyes a fair bit of the time as I took in Messier 41, Kembles Cascade and hunted for La Superba against horrible reflected streetlight glow in my eyes. But The Beehive M44 was visible as a prominient naked eye blur, and seemingly one of the Auriga clusters seemed to be naked eye visible. Unless I'm mistaking a patch of milky way for this.

That had me hmming, I can tell you! But who caresa about a little perplexment, when you can VIEW THE STARS FOR FREE

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