t takes some effort to find these things. Last night, I checked where Saturn would be this morning at 6:30 (preceding the moon). Got up at 6:10. Walked outside – clear with broken clouds and there was the moon. Transported the scope outside, set it up, lined it up, swung it to bear. Over the sight I could see the moon and a bright star off to its right. Lined it up. Lower mag lens (x25 or so) I cast around in that area and suddenly there it was. I could see it, tiny rings and dunish body and all. I was so nailed by this that I looked for about 10 minutes before remembering I had a 60x lens. That brought it up even bigger. She was full on to the sun, the rings back about 20 degrees like a cocked hat. I could see it all. Amazing.
I tracked her for about twenty minutes (pulling away when occasional clouds passed. With the sun coming up, I was starting to lose her so I switched on the filter and hopped to the moon. Scanned around the Sea of Moisture – many craters visible. Of course, I really couldn’t go with the new moon map because it was (a) inside (b) somewhere and (c) if I turned on the light to look for it, I’d lose my night vision. So it was VFR for that.
Crossover hobby note: while setting up, I backed out a lens securing screw a little too far and it dropped off. This is most certainly an N-scale model railroading issue – I drop tiny things all the time. Rule one – DO NOT MOVE YOUR FEET! So I carefully stooped and fetched out the red penlight. Scanned around in the grass and found it – whew. Okay, I’m gathering does and don’ts in this new astronomy hobby, and one don’t would be: don’t ever back screws out of anything without keeping a careful grip on them.