University Lowbrow Astronomers

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Perseid Meteor Shower and Campfire Reports (August 2004).

Perseid Campfire

Wednesday August 11 and Thursday, August 12, 2004

John Causland

Near Delhi in Loch Alpine: I happened to step outside about midnight too and had a similar experience. The sky was quite transparent - wished I had a scope out and ready. We counted 14 with 6 really bright near bolides. Figured about one every other minute for the half hour that we had with the hole open. Must have seen the same ones running horizontal between the dippers!!!

Kept thinking this would have been a GREAT Perseid night if we could have taken it all in. So I slept out on my deck under cloudy skies, til I woke up at 4:45 and the sky again was crystal clear. For the 20 minutes I could keep my eyes open, AGAIN, saw another 10 with 3 more bolides. In both cases, the clouds presented limiting horizons, so I was really HAPPY with what I saw.

I think we were cheated out of a really good show this year!!!

Mike Garrahan

Between 4:30 and 5:00 AM I saw 23 Perseids and 4 non-Perseids from my back yard in Dexter.

Shari Lindskov

My husband Mike got me up at 5:00 am here near Delhi Metropark to look. The clouds had opened up and we could even see the Milky Way. We saw quite a few meteors, despite the rising moon. About one a minute for the 15 minutes or so that we were out. Three of them were quite bright and covered about 10 degrees of sky. Two meteors were heading east.

Saturday August 14, 2004

John Causland and Charlie Nielsen

The Saturday after the peak of the meteor shower, several Lowbrows went to Peach Mountain Observatory. However the weather was not the best, and they gathered around a “campfire.” (This campfire is shown in the photograph above). This is a true classic from Saturday night at Peach Mountain.

I believe, for the sake of clarification for the history books, that was a 5 double red LED log campfire. And proof that even a minimum of extra solar photons can warm a Lowbrow’s heart.

Thanks also to Mark and Chris for their sacrificial early departure. The sky gods quickly responded with a nice hole that lasted about an hour - enough to cruise through a bunch of familiar objects, ending with M33, reminding us why we suffer through our addiction and are willing to show up at the Hill with only a promise of sucker holes - and then just sit around the old flickering LED flames for a couple hours jawing about faint ones we didn’t let get away....

Just for the record, there was also a single beam, AA flashlight with red filter, in “the fire.”

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