ENTHUSIASMS

- A blog written by a perennial enthusiast

The Double Cluster

Sunday 11 November 2018
ASTROPHOTOGRAPHY 

I am very pleased with my first image from iTelescope of the famous double cluster in Perseus. I have not yet managed to unpack my telescope and CCD camera since we moved here. On the rare occasions that I have had time to think about practical astronomy, the weather has not been helpful. Although the night sky here is much better than it was in our old house, it is not good.

The Pleiades from Headford

Saturday 6 October 2018
ASTROPHOTOGRAPHY 

It’s rare to have a clear night in the West of Ireland, but I was lucky while we were staying at my in-laws in Headford, County Galway. Rather than trying to take a quality astrophoto, I wanted to capture an impression of the rural sky and just how much we are missing in the south of England. I put my DSLR on a tripod, set the ISO to 800, and set the lens to 24mm and wide open at f4.

Mars from Mayo

Sunday 30 September 2018
ASTROPHOTOGRAPHY 

Sadly, we had to go to the West of Ireland for my Father-in-Law’s funeral. For part of the time we were there, we stayed in a lovely thatched house, an AirBnB near the village of Cong in County Mayo. Although the house was close to the main road into Cong, it was well above the road up a steep drive, and looked out onto fields and woodland across Lough Corrib and Connemara.

Red Arrows

Friday 10 August 2018
WEATHER  NEW FOREST 

The end of Cowes Week (a huge yachting event in the Solent) there are celebrations, with big parties, fireworks and this year a flying display from the RAF’s Red Arrows and the simultaneous departure of the “three Queens” (the Cunard liners Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria). We took a picnic to our local beach to watch. We mostly had to stay in the car at first as heavy showers kept racing along the solent, giving some very dramatic scenes and pretty rainbows.

Wildfire

Tuesday 10 July 2018
WEATHER  NEW FOREST 

I was on my way back from a great walk down to the sea when I spotted a thin column of smoke in the forest up ahead. I was surpised that anyone would risk a bonfire in such dry conditions, and hurried to check that it was under control. Within seconds, the smoke was so much thicker and the base so wide, that it could not possibly be a controlled burn.

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