Less-than-perfect evening at Montebello

by Peter McKone

We had a good group and very pleasant weather at Montebello last Monday night. The temperature was 70 degrees when we packed up to leave at midnight. Seeing started deteriorating rapidly at around 11 pm. and at 11:30 I asked Bob Jardine if this was the worst seeing he had ever experienced. He replied that it wasn't.

Someone must have overheard the conversation, because last night I got a demonstration how bad seeing can be in a cloudless sky. My first clue was that I couldn't focus on ... the Moon! At 72x, the craters were fuzzy. I tried other locations in the sky. Epsilon Lyra looked like two elongated galaxies with no cores. I couldn't see the individual stars. The temperature was 45 degrees when I gave up and locked the gate at 7:30 pm.