March 11, 2014
I have two telescope systems which I crazily and happily takes to star parties. One is a Celestron Nexstar 8SE CST (8inch, f/10) on a GOTO Alt az mount. The other is an Equinox 80mm ED APO refractor on a HEQ5 Pro Synscan. I would usually use the equinox for imaging when on my own. I dont drive, I take public transport...so how do I carry all this?!? Well, I put the scopes and accessories into a large Arcteryx 90 expedition backack which distributes the weight very nicely. The mounts and tripods go in a club cricket wheelie bag. I have been doing this for a year...yes sometimes its hard if I find myself at train stations with no escalotors or lifts, such as my own damn Peckham Rye station where I have to carry it up two flights of stairs...but my enthusiasm is such that its worth the physical effort. I also have an 80X15 Helio Quantum 4 Binoculars which I also take...and finally I have a red head torch :)
Started this hobby just over a year ago when I noticed there are amateur astronomers in London! I depend on taking my scopes out to group stargaze or sneak it into my local Dulwich Sports centre field. Member of Flamsteed Society and Astrocamp fan.
I attended an impromptu meetup, that John justifiable organised based on a very positive clear night forecast on the day. It was well organised, meeting in a pub before hand by which he then led the way to the good stargazing spot on Streatham Common. Unfortunately, the weather had failed us but the group attendees were a great bunch and there was no regrets in attending despite the no show of clear skies as promised by the MET just hours earlier! I very much recommend this meetup group for South Londoners.