Archive for the 'Pics' Category

Observing Report 13th-14th December 2017 (Geminid meteors)

Posted by on December 17th 2017 in Astrostuff, Observing Reports, Pics
Tags: ,

Typically there was much cloud on the two best Geminid meteor observing nights. Just to rub it in, it had been clear for both of the two preceding nights and it was clear again for both of the two following nights. I managed a stop/start session on the night of the 13th, the skies changing from short clear periods to longer periods of snow or sleet far too often for my liking. I seemed to spend most of the time stopping/starting the capture software and covering/uncovering the camera. About 25 bright trails were observed while only 118 camera shots were taken, but only two Geminids were recorded.

Here's a composite pic, click it to see a bigger version:

A pair of Geminid meteors.

Astro Imaging – Works in Progress from October 2017 Observing Sessions

Posted by on November 2nd 2017 in Astrostuff, Pics

I've managed to get out for a few observing/imaging sessions recently. So far I've only stacked four sets of sub-frames in DeepSkyStacker, I've yet to throw any Photoshop Actions at them.

Here's what I'll be fiddling with when there's nobody looking:


The Horsehead and Flame Nebulae in Orion.


The Double Cluster in Perseus.


IC1848 Soul Nebula in Cassiopeia.


M45 Pleiades in Taurus.


I'll post the finished articles as and when.


Observing Report 5th-13th August 2017 (Perseid meteors)

Posted by on August 22nd 2017 in Astrostuff, Observing Reports, Pics

From the 5th to the 13th of August I managed four nights watching and photographing the Perseids. 1799 pics later and I'd caught nine good meteors on camera, and I'd seen about 75 while lazing on the garden bench. Bearing in mind the low hourly rates, several bouts of cloudiness and the rising Moon, nine on camera is about as many as I would have expected.

Here's the best pic of the bunch, captured on the 12th - looking towards the zenith, West is more-or-less downwards. Click it to see a bigger version:

A pair of Perseid meteors heading west-southwest.

I’m back

Posted by on July 22nd 2017 in Great Escapes, Pics

Released back into the wild, the dominant male heads to the high ground to reclaim his territory:


S7317 - 2,861 ft (872m)

Down the Cut

Posted by on September 28th 2016 in Great Escapes, Pics

I got out for some much-needed exercise in the sunshine and fresh air today. A few miles of tow-path walking along the canal near where I lived when I was a kid (from 4 to about 30), mainly to revisit one of the few unspoiled stretches where I used to go fishing, where the banks aren't steel-clad and the trees haven't been felled.

I took a few pics which I will post soon but for now here's a clickable taster:


Ashby Canal between bridges 28 and 29

Observing Report 17th April 2016 (Unexpected sunspots)

Posted by on May 1st 2016 in Astrostuff, Observing Reports, Pics
Tags: ,

It's hard to believe that it's been over a year since I posted anything astronomy-related.

I'm not yet ready for full nights up in the obsy, but unexpectedly I was allowed out to play during the day.

Here are a couple of sunspot pics and a stitched image from a session a couple of weeks ago. Not my best work, but it was fun trying to remember which wires connect what to what, and which software settings are best for the conditions and the data.

Active Region 2529 (17/04/2016).
DMK mono camera with 2.25x Barlow on C80ED-R, Baader Solar Film filter.


Active Region 2532 (17/04/2016).
DMK mono camera with 2.25x Barlow on C80ED-R, Baader Solar Film filter.


Sun (17/04/2016).
Six stitched images from the DMK mono camera on C80ED-R, Baader Solar Film filter.

Gratuitous mugshot

Posted by on February 14th 2016 in Illness and injury, Just for fun, Pics

Men Behaving Baldy.

Nick V., Uncle Fester and Michael N.

Photo by Nick.

Not so Smug now, eh?

Posted by on June 19th 2014 in Astrostuff, Photo hosting, Pics, Site update

It's taken me 127 days to de-SmugMug this blog, but it's been worth it.

Maybe now I can get back to some serious blogging.

Or maybe some not-so-serious blogging.


Hotwiring the fragment-links and superceding the binary— binary— binary— binary— binary— binary— …

Posted by on May 4th 2014 in Photo hosting, Pics, Site update

If only I could do that, the task of editing all of the blog's image, image-link and mouseover URLs (to reflect the changes associated with migrating all of my pics out of the failing SmugMug and into WordPress) would probably be a doddle. As it is, it's a tedious manual-edit jobbie that's taking me ages.

Two months in and I'm still not a quarter of the way there. It didn't help that a fortnight ago WordPress updated to version 3.9 and the thing fell apart because of the limitations of the bundled "upgraded" TinyMCE visual editor which had been gelded of various features that I need to do the editing. The techies at BlueHost did a restore from a their monthly backup to get me back onto WP3.8.3 with the previous TinyMCE... that put me back in control, but it undid a month of editing and scrubbed a month of uploads.

So, expect this place to be a mess while the transfer is in progress. I reckon I have about 6,000 URL edits still to do, so it's going to take a long time.

FWIW, I did try reversing the polarity of the neutron flow but that had no beneficial effects. The sonic screwdriver...

is helping a bit.

Maybe I need a Doctor.

Every Which Way but Luss

Posted by on March 30th 2014 in Campaigns and Petitions, Pics

Here's a reminder that voting for the Woodland Trust "Transform the Trossachs" project closes tomorrow (Monday).

If you want to support this project you can find more details here.

The good news is that it looks like they've already started the transformation, with a little "flipping" help from Photoshop:

 See how easy it was?

Right turn: Clyde.


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