What a month October has been! I left my home in Florida on October 2nd and drove two days to Warrensburg Missouri (pronounced "Missoura" btw!). It's rained all summer at home it seems, and I was so looking forward to a cross-country trip and some clear skies. Two Paramounts, telescopes, and gear hit the road for a wild Fall tour that would last two weeks. It seems to have been cursed by mother-nature. Rained the whole drive to somewhere south of Nashville, TN where I stopped for the first night. It then rained all the way to Warrensburg, PA, and it rained the whole time I was there, but for a few hours when we stole a peek at the Sun through a DayStar Quantum filter.
Why was I in Warrensburg? My first trip to Daystar's SolarFest star party. I was invited to come and give a talk about @focus3 since it seems almost no one doing solar imaging has a way to autofocus. Well, they do now ;-). Attendance was down because naturally of the weather, but we still had a pretty good crowd of solar imagers and observers. This is a little bit of new ground for me, but I do have some tools for doing this and have been doing so myself for a little while now. In addition to autofocus, I also talked to the group about making .SER files with LTI and learned a good bit about what their requirements are for effective solar imaging (and lucky imaging in general). Yes indeed, we are coming for this market, and we plan to build great tools for this (which I must admit I am looking forward to using myself). Old friends caught up with, new friends made; by any metric, a success!
Next stop was Golden, CO for a tip to the Software Bisque mother ship for a couple of days of meetings there. We had plenty to talk about and work through for a solid roadmap into next years product enhancements and getting a few projects/products finally completed. It's always good to see the crew there, share some meals and war stories, and get recharged. Deadlines are a good thing too, and I have one now for NEAF, so plenty to do once I get home!
It also rained all the way to Golden, rained the two days I was there, and it rained all day the following Wednesday when I drove down to the Okie-Tex star party (oh, except when it was snowing!). As I arrived, the rain stopped and a large double rainbow appeared. Glory! Maybe I will finally...
Nope, never mind. Richard is here, let's start raining again. The mud was pretty bad and I ended up parking on the side of the road rather than along side the RV of my friend who was sheltering me from the cold and rain. I did setup, but mostly the scopes remained covered from the constant mist and drizzle. Again, old friends and new, plus a little tech support kept the trip from being a... wash (sorry, could not help myself!).The photo here was when the sun came out briefly Friday morning, just before I packed up. No, the sun did not stay out, and they were actually shooing everyone to leave as the weather was about to turn really bad with 8" of snow expected after some freezing rain and sleet.
I can't catch a break... rained all the way to Kentucky where I've stopped now to see my family for a couple of days (yes, I'm working right now at Starbucks... don't worry, we have plans for later today<g>).
I have a new star party policy that I was looking forward to trying this trip, but I suppose it will have to wait until next time (probably Winter Star Party, which is back in the KEYS!). One scope for imaging, and one for visual. The MYT with WiFi board is an amazing visual treat to use and we need to do a better job of getting that word out. I have a Quantum for daytime solar viewing, and nice collection of eyepieces and filters for night time viewing. Something to do while the other mount cranks away at my next photographic masterpiece!
The skies here where I am in Kentucky are forecast to be gorgeous... the night after I drive home to Florida.
Oh well... still waiting for that big weather control breakthrough somewhere ;-)
10-15-2018 8:59 AM