Mark, John and Lee at the scenic
Camp Site (photo by Keith)

A week before this event most of the weather forecasting sites were predicting overcast skies for August 30th, a little disheartening, so it was under almost crystal clear skies that society members journeyed in convoy (sort of) over to Robin Hood’s Bay for the annual Hook’s House Star Party!

Even the breeze had abated somewhat – so under almost ideal conditions seven scopes were deployed on the play field – more than enough for happy campers and members alike.

Astophotogapher Warren,
warming-up (photo by Keith)

First up on the observing menu was a lovely crescent moon, sinking slowly down towards the west horizon. With clear views to the SW hopes were high of catching Saturn and Mars before they set. We were not disappointed, and although not at its best views of Saturn in particular caused a wave of excitement which spread round the campsite, more and more came along to look and marvel.

It was interesting to note both Mars and its rival Antares both just above the horizon. Mars blinked first and departed.

So after an hectic initial hour, moon and bright planets were memories - time for some deep sky wonders and quiche!

The site may not be über dark, but compared to the West Cliff it’s like being on a field overlooking a Bay – without lights- in other words it’s just terrific.

It wasn’t long therefore before the Milky Way was quite clearly visible in all of its glory, as well as a tray of very tasty sausage rolls. The Ring nebula, Dumbbell, M13, M92, M81 & 82, M18, M21, M22, M56, M15 and double cluster were all superb, not forgetting M31 and tomato soup.

Several meteors graced the sky, one in particular was rather impressive shooting down toward the SE horizon. Mark gave various laser tours, attracting blue lights and a helicopter, complete with search light, but we think this was a coincidence?

So, a great site, a great sky, a great audience, a great feast- what’s not to like!

Mark – well i did miss the hotdogs, otherwise nothing at all.

Thanks to Andi, John, Keith, Lee and Warren - nice quiche and sausage rolls.


Setting-up at Hooks House Farm. (Photo by John Lamb)

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Moon, taken at Hooks House Farm Star Party. (Photo by John Lamb)

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Lee is on most photos, because he's the diligent one always looking through his scope (Photo by Keith)

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First visitors arrive at Hooks House Famr Star pary. (Photo by Keith)

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