Comet NEOWISE 2020/F3

A comet visible to the naked eye is a rare occurrence. A comet approaching the Sun was recently discovered by NASA's NEOWISE satellite. Today is its closest approach to the Sun where it is heating up and brightening rapidly. Observers in Arizona have been able to...

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Bear and service berries

Mr. (or Mrs.) bear paid us a visit early Tuesday morning. There are four service berry trees around the house and they are loaded with ripe berries. I have been picking them - they taste like blueberries - or shaking the limbs to get them off so bears will leave them....

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Hail storm!

Baslam was pounded by an intense hail storm yesterday starting around 1:00 PM and lasting for a good 30 minutes. We had piles of hailstones in the yard, on the deck and especially around the downspouts. Leaves on trees were shredded to bits and it sounded like it was...

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Raging waterfall

Licklog Creek was flowing brown and over the roadway this past Monday after a downpour at BMP. The Dogstar rain gauge was off line but judging by water levels it was several inches per hour.

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Upcoming ISS Passes

We are finally getting some clear skies and the International Space Station will be visible the next few nights. Tonight's pass at 9:36 is especially good since it's almost directly overhead and will be very bright.

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New moon over the Balsams

The waxing crescent phase of the moon was just over one day past new last night (April 24th). As the moon draws away from the sun more of its surface will be illuminated and it will rise later in the day. In about 27 days it sill be full, rise at sunset and set at...

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Homemade disinfectant wipes

We have been practicing social distancing for over a week at Dogstar Observatory and forgot to bring wipes from Atlanta. On a recent trip to Lowes to find some disinfectant (they were sold out of most household cleaning stuff) I did find a shelf full of a product...

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Fireball!

Last month I was lucky to witness one of the more exciting events in the sky - a daytime meteor or fireball. Fireballs are just very bright meteors - typically brighter than Venus in the night sky or bright enough to be seen in daylight. At our home in Atlanta, I just...

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Planets Tonight

Well the clouds are not looking good for seeing the planets at sunset. If by some miracle the western sky is clear around 5:30 I plan to head up to the helicopter pad to try and see Venus, Saturn and the crescent moon. It's about the only accessible place on the...

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