by Jeffrey Crilly
Someone noted the ceiling at 4k feet... they were right, but it did vary with some clearing.
(DDK: Not to worry, you didnt miss anything, except for the druids in capes that were apparantly camping nearby.)
When I got there before sunset, another fellow (Bob) had setup already up on the pads. The sky looked kinda skunky, but I setup anyhow.
Once it got dark, the sky cleared a bit. But then by 11 or so we were in thick soup.
So, we had some fun with the laser, checking out how thick the stuff was, etc. At one point the tower lights were totally obsured. Needless to say, *everything* was soaking.
Around 1am, 1:30am or so, we got "bands" of clearing. It was looking better. But then we would get swamped by another wave of fog.
And we waited.
Around 230am it was deemed to be a failure, and we started packing it in. Then around 3am I looked up and it was clear, with the fog in the valleys about 500ft down. (As you suspect, it was pretty dark, but I think there were still some transparency issues.)
Clearly, we did not follow rule thirt-six-point- two of appeasing the weather gods: When there is more than one astronomer sitting under skunky skies, only *one* astronomer needs to packup for the skies to clear. (Note to self: next time, bring a sacrifical scope. Actually, Bob had a small scope, but he put it away to early.)
Just before I left I kicked back for a while, had a sandwich, and did some bino observing with the 15x50s. MW was up, and the summer constellations were moving overhead.
I'll probably get out again sometime this week. (before new moon) I'm not sure about tonight - I'm feeling pretty zonky, but the car is somewhat still packed with the heavy bits.