(IAAC) Obj: M51 - Inst: 12.5" F 4.8 Dobsonian

Observation Poster: Paul Money <paul_ohstbucks@msn.com>
Observer: Paul Money
Your skills: Beginner (< one year)
Date/time of observation: 1/5/3 200AM CST
Location of site: Hillsdale, KS (Lat , Elev )
Site classification: Rural
Sky darkness: 4.8 <Limiting magnitude>
Seeing: 8 <1-10 Seeing Scale (10 best)>
Moon presence: None - moon not in sky
Instrument: 12.5" F 4.8 Dobsonian
Magnification: 60x 120x
Filter(s): none
Object(s): M51
Category: External galaxy.
Constellation: CVn
Data: mag   size 
Position: RA :  DEC :
M51 was just rising out of the light dome. It was easily recognizable 
along with its companion NGC5195. M51 was to the left with the companion to 
the right.  A large bright haze surrounded M51 to distinguish it from 
its smaller companion. With averted vision I was barely able to discern 
its spiral nature. One spiral arm arched between the core and NGc5195 to 
the west and another arched east of the bright core. It looked as if 
brackets surrounded the core rather than arms spiraling in towards the 
center.  I will surely revisit this when it gets nearer zenith where the 
sky has 6mag visibility.  I used both 60x and 120x with the 
higher magnification showing slightly more detail. 
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