View Full Version here: : Travelling Distance To Observe
18-05-2008, 08:17 AM
Hi all was wondering how far do we all go to observe,Me myself i go to two sites #1 is 5 klm`s out of broken hill and #2 is 27klm`s out to beat the skyglow for the DSO`S cheers kev.
18-05-2008, 08:21 AM
Our local site (pony club at mangrove mountain) is about 30 minutes from home, but it's not exactly dark dark. Convenient though, with power, toilets, flat, good horizons.
Mogo creek is about 70 minutes away, much darker but no power, not as convenient, and lots of trees.
I'd love to be able to go somewhere like Lostock or Ilford but couldn't justify that drive for just one nights observing when I need to get home to the family who will wake me up at 6-7am.
18-05-2008, 08:34 AM
70 kms to glencs ..96 kms to robs or 101kms with my shortcut:whistle:
18-05-2008, 10:06 AM
I used to drive about 12k's out of town... but now I've bought a place 2k's from my old dark sky site, so I'm not planning on driving anywhere!;):D
18-05-2008, 10:17 AM
I observe from home, where the sky is dark but unfortunately has an ever increasing sky glow from Brisbane and Caboolture.
But if I set up with care, our house blocks the light.
I do travel to observe, but it is mainly for the social aspect.
18-05-2008, 12:02 PM
If you are talking a single nights observing, an hours drive from home is about as far as i want to go. When packing up after a session im usually feeling tired and falling asleep at the wheel isnt good for the astronomy hobby.
18-05-2008, 12:07 PM
I generally go out to Bargo, 45 minutes drive away. The sad thing is that (if my memory is not romanticising the past) the skies there are no darker than they were from my parents' back yard in the mid-seventies. They live in Tarrawanna about 5-6km from the centre of Wollongong. Such is 'progress' :screwy:.
18-05-2008, 12:47 PM
I do some at home moon and planets, but if it is darker skies then a smidge over an hour to the Pony Club...at least once a year out to SPSP 3+ hours
18-05-2008, 01:57 PM
"I generally go out to Bargo, 45 minutes drive away. The sad thing is that (if my memory is not romanticising the past) the skies there are no darker than they were from my parents' back yard in the mid-seventies."
Even sadder, the Bargo site off Yarran Rd is on a slow and steady decline too. I started going there in the early 90s and the skyglow in the east from Sydney/Campbelltown/Wollongong is slowly but steadily on the increase both in brightness and height above the horizon. I reckon we have lost a couple of 1/10ths of a magnitude in the last 10 yrs, but at least it is "reasonably" convenient. The ZLM there on a good night is about 6.2-6.3, but somewhat worse in the low NE to SE.
For me, 55 mins drive (50mins on the way home -- its downhill).
I also observe at Gratti near Mudgee about two or three times a year at a true dark site. with a ZLM about 6.5 - 6.6 -- but it is almost 4 hrs away.
18-05-2008, 02:03 PM
20 feet out my back door.
20 minutes to the club site at Jerrara dam.
3 1/2 hours to either Ophir or Hillend
+12000 kms to central Florida Astronomical Societies dark site lol
I'm about 50km from the centre of Canberra and enjoy reasonably dark skies. As a bonus the hills to the west do a very good job at shielding a lot of the skyglow as well.
Just to be on the safe side, I try not to image anything low in the west unless something amazing is happening like a comet.
18-05-2008, 03:50 PM
Valentine Park , not real dark but darker than my backyard cf my nutty nitwit neighbour who has a habit of keeping his dambed back and front lights on all night. (10km +/- / 15mins).Convenience , I can park within 50 feet of where I usually set up .
I think the spot is a bit of "lovers' lane" as I often find a car or two parked at the end of the parking area (where I like to go to set up as its about 500m from the main road so car beams wont bother me much , and they don't stay long after I arrive and start setting up.
The other option is Raphmines Park , but been a while since I was there at night. (25km / 30mins).
Morisset Park (out past the looney bin) is probably a good dark spot but it's a bit of run (and petrols pricey these days) , always thought the loop road off Eucalypus Drive might be worth a look one dark cloudless moonless night. (40km / 45mins)
Nord's Wharf picnic area area used to be pretty dark , but been a while since I was there at night too. (25km/30mins)
I could I suppose check both Raphmines and Morisset out on the same night .... they are not far from each other.
I'm hoping soon to wind up working and living back in the far NW of WA , a few km or so out of town from Hedland or Karratha and the sky is pitch black on moonless cloudless nights.
18-05-2008, 03:52 PM
30 minutes to MAS's site at The Oaks
1 hr to another MAS site in Belanglo
3 hrs to our caravan site NW of Crookwell
12 hrs to a really dark site west of Broken Hill (some bloke called Kevnool on IIS also turns up)
18-05-2008, 04:34 PM
Quote from Ian Robinson
"I'm hoping soon to wind up working and living back in the far NW of WA , a few km or so out of town from Hedland or Karratha and the sky is pitch black on moonless cloudless nights."
I don't travel at all at the moment. Backyard here is pretty reasonable for observing and some imaging, but I do miss those velvet black nights in the WA bush. Could have done wonders, even with a DSI on me old 60mm :)
18-05-2008, 04:56 PM
I do A LOT of observing from my back yard (25kms out of brisbane where skies look like neon lights!) mostly planetary/lunar..
I travel about 1.5 - 2hrs (traffic dependent) to Astroron's house for the new moon observation nights where im glued to DSO's..
If something special is on, I'll travel 3hrs, maybe 4 if its really good... Will be 2hrs or so to QLD Astrofest...
18-05-2008, 06:26 PM
10' :thumbsup: haven't been too many places darker than my backyard... maybe one
but the horizon suffers there.
19-05-2008, 07:58 AM
Admittedly I dont do much "observing" but i do some "imaging".
now that i've moved to the big smoke, i have to travel 250km to go back to my observatory....
with the price of petrol it makes for an expensive weekend, hence to pressure i feel to produce some images
19-05-2008, 09:42 AM
I'm envious - we stayed for a week in Broken Hill in 2006. A couple of nights we'd drive 30 minutes up the Silver City Highway, pull over and do some bino observing. The skies were fabulous.
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