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(IAAC) Obj: M106 - Inst: 25" f/3.5



Observer: Lew Gramer
Your skills: Intermediate
Date and UT of Observation: 1997-06-7/8, 06:00 UT
Location: Rumney, NH, USA (43N)
Site classification: rural
Limiting magnitude: 7.2 (zenith)
Seeing: 3 of 10 - pretty good (but hazy)
Moon up: no
Instrument: 25" f/3.5 truss dobsonian reflector
Magnification: 250x, 320x
Filters used: None
Object: M106 (ngc 4258)
Category: Spiral galaxy [SAB(s)bcP]
Constellation: CVn
Data: mag 8.41  size 18.6'x7.2'
RA/DE: 12h19m  +47o18m
Description:
In spite of a receding haze, we tried this fine prototype dob
out on one of the most striking galaxies in the sky, M106. The
Canes Venatici beauty exhibited an extended, extremely elongated
halo some 20' long, with a minor axis of no more than 5'. The
bright, multifeatured core showed strong spiral arms off-center,
giving it the appearance of being "rotated" about 45o from the
axis of the halo. No hint of spiral arms could be seen in the
halo (probably thanks to the haze), but it did show large dark
features both NE and SW (?) of core. The core brightened very
suddenly toward the middle, where a startingly bright stellar
nucleus could be seen, especially at the higher power. What a
SIGHT this galaxy is in such a scope under such skies! It would
certainly deserve several more paragraphs of description, but
as I was observing through a friend's scope, there was no way
to give M106 the lengthy look-and-log which it deserves. :)