the Lodge

VicSouth Desert Spring Star Party


The Friday night was clear and dark (except for the thousands of brilliant stars) and a great time was had by all. Especially by those of us who stayed up until moonrise. Or beyond. And a thank you to everyone who helped with our very successful public viewing session too.
Thursday night, for the few of us who came early, wasn't bad either. Except for the other non-astronomical Lodge guests who were afraid of the dark!
Saturday night began with rain and then progressed to a spectacular lightning show. Fortunately it was a warm night so most of us sat under the verandahs and watched the action. Sunday night began well, but after a few hours the smoke from large bushfires far upwind began to reach us. The exceptionally dry winter of 2006 had left vast areas primed to burn; and Saturday's lightning ignited numerous fires.

Download (70MB wmv) a video slideshow of VicSouth 2006 by Leon Geljon.

*A 15 second exposure of the southern horizon at VicSouth. Canon Powershot A530 on tripod. Click here for full size image.

*Hmmm....this looks like an example of I Forgot My Tripod....

*How did Perry Vlahos persuade dozens of the locals to sit on the grass in the twilight?

*Oooh...I want one of them for xmas, and two of those, and that whatever-it-is....

*The visual observing techniques workshop drew a big crowd.

*A strike during Saturday night's spectacular lightning show. Several bushfires, some of which were far upwind from us in South Australia's Mallee region, were started that night. The smoke from the SA fires produced a spectacular sunset on Sunday, but slowly blotted out the stars on Sunday night.

*Sunday night's first smoke cloud approaches, silouhetted against the setting Milky Way in Sagittarius. Note the absence of illumination of the cloud by any light pollution.

*The observing field getting busy on Friday evening.

*Mike with his telescope.

*Paul with his 125mm binoculars. ASSA members reading this should note the presence of cloudless twilight sky above him.

*Angela and Michael with their telescopes.

*Petra with her telescope.
A few seconds after your webmaster showed Petra this photo he suffered horrible injuries...

*"...Mum, can I look through ALL of these telescopes??"

*Mick's big one.

*Graeme admiring Tim's colour coordinated t-shirt, shorts, wristwatch, and telescope.

*Another black telescope.

*George's big one.

*And finally, David's purple one. Who cares what colour the dewshield is? You can't see it in the dark anyway....

go to VicSouth 2005

go to VicSouth 2007