Observing Report 13th March 2013 (Comet Pan-STARRS (C/2011 L4))

Posted by @ 6:40 am on Thursday 14th March, 2013.

I managed to get away for a couple of hours around sundown last night, it was the first clear(ish) evening for a while and the first chance we'd had to have a look at Comet Pan-STARRS (C/2011 L4). Finding it was an interesting experience - too soon after sunset and the skies were still too light, and later when the skies had darkened the comet was so close to the horizon that it stood a chance of being lost in the murk of haze, cloud and light-pollution.

Persistence was the key. Eventually the bank of low snow-cloud moved away and revealed the target. It's not visible with the naked-eye yet during these conditions but it's an impressive sight through 10x50 binoculars. The 70-300 lens on the D50 picked it out quite easily.

Here's one of many pics from the evening, I'll post a few more later:

Comet Pan-STARRS (C/2011 L4).
Nikon D50, 70-300 lens @ 300mm, 5s @ f/7.1, ISO 800, static tripod.

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