Jump to content
SASS Wire Forum
Sign in to follow this  
Charlie Harley, #14153

Any stargazers?

Recommended Posts

My wife and I are heading to Big Bend National Park. Among the many things it is famous for is its dark sky. 

 

Are any Saloonatics also stargazers who can suggest what to look for?  Aligned planets?  Meteor showers?

 

Also, can anyone suggest a good stargazing app?  The kind you point at the sky and it overlays constellations and other neat info?

 

As always, the Saloon’s help is much appreciated. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have SkyView Lite app on my phone. Hold the phone up to the sky and it out lines different stars & zodiac signs.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Get a star map at your friendly, local maritime store. :rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Are you taking a telescope?  Or at least a decent binoculars...?  

 

It's amazing how "full" a piece of sky becomes when viewed through just seven-power binoculars!    star.gif

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been using this one.  https://apps.apple.com/us/app/skyview/id404990064

 

Also, if you have a tripod and camera with a wide angle lens, you might try some night time photography of the milky way.

Set you camera wide open (widest aperture) and (divide 500 by your focal length) seconds exposure=>  500/Focal length =time.

 

Using a 24mm on a 35mm at 20 seconds I get this:

 

L1002439-1.JPG

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Take a really good set of FIXED power binoculars with a magnification between 6 and 10 and at least a 40mm objective lens. Do not use variable power binoculars they lack the light gathering capabilities of a fixed power set. Binoculars with too much magnification will be heavy and hard to hold steady.

Below are some good beginner choices that will not break your bank and are more than adequate.

https://www.opticsplanet.com/vortex-crossfire-hd-8x42-binoculars.html

https://www.opticsplanet.com/vortex-crossfire-hd-10x50-binoculars.html

https://www.opticsplanet.com/nikon-prostaff-3s-8x42-roof-prism-binocular.html

An inexpensive monopod that is adjustable in height would also be beneficial to help steady the binoculars along with a comfortable chair that reclines.

 

Here is a selection of good apps.

 

The absolute best beginners book I have found is "Turn Left at Orion" by Guy Consolmagno & Dan M. Davis.

Second best is  "The Backyard Astronomer's Guide", by Terence Dickinson and Alan Dyer.

Third is "NightWatch: A Practical Guide to Viewing the Universe" by Terence Dickinson

 

BTW you can do an exceptional amount of stargazing with nothing more that a quality set of 8X or 10X binoculars. If you get bitten by the bug before you buy a telescope do a lot of homework. 98% of all telescopes marketed to beginners are inadequate and will just frustrate you. Kind of like shooting CAS with a Henry Big Boy. You can do it but it isn't going to be fun. The single most important part of a telescope is not the optics but the mount. I spent 3X more for my tripod than I did for my 4.5" Newtonian telescope.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Howdy Charlie.

 

I don't know enough about cameras to suggest any of that stuff.   But I sure like that pic posted by 

ShadowCatcher.

 

I do know a little about binoculars and I agree with others about having a good set of Bino's

for some viewing of the night sky.   I prefer atleast a 10 power, but when you go 10 or above,

you'll want some assistance to help keep them from looking 'shake' cause every heart beat

will make your viewing appear to be bouncing.

It helps to be able to rest elbows on your car, etc............

 

Merry Christmas.

And if you happen to see Santa and 8 Reindeer cruising across the night sky next week,

yell out a big "Widder says hey"!

:D

 

..........Widder (Walkin in a WIdder Wonderland)

 

 

Edited by Widder, SASS #59054

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

I have SkyView Lite app on my phone. Hold the phone up to the sky and it out lines different stars & zodiac signs.

 

I second the motion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Most shooters have spotting scopes,  as well as telescopic sights.  Beginning astronomers get seduced by high magnification numbers, but quickly discover that lower magnification binocs and scopes with high quality optics reveal more than high magnification with poor quality lenses.  So start looking at the sky with the optics you already own before making investments.   I agree that a solid tripod and mountings make sky watching much more enjoyable.  Don’t skimp on the tripod.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I too use SkyView Lite on my iPhone.   In my Android I use Satellite AR and Google Sky Map.

We love Big Bend, usually spend a week there in the winter on our way to Winter Range.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

GoSkyWatch is an excellent phone app.  About $10.00 to download about 10 years ago. Picture is a screen shot from my bed, you don’t have to be outside to use it.  The circled star in the center is where I was pointing.

8AB9D122-2B34-45D7-9DF4-CAFBF9BE64AF.jpeg

Edited by Pulp, SASS#28319

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Howdy,

You might find some decent tripods at any goodwill or

other used sales shop.

Simple supports that are solid can be just fine too.

Have fun.

Best

CR

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.