MONOCEROS
by Steve Coe
13" f/5.6 unless noted

NGC 2149 is pretty bright, pretty small and has a brighter middle at 100X. 200X does not bring out any more detail. A grey dot in a very nice field.

NGC 2182 is just a fuzzy star at 100X. The UHC filter does not help.

NGC 2183 and 2185 are in the same field near Beta Mon. Even at a very dark site on a night I rated 7/10 for seeing and transparency there is not much here. At 100X in the 13" there are several fuzzy stars in a field that is noticeably void of stars compared to the nearby Milky Way. 2185 has star in the center of pretty faint and round nebula, 2183 is dimmer and has no star. The UHC filter does not help.

NGC 2215 is bright, large, pretty rich, round and compressed at 165X. I counted 42 stars, some in nice chains. Seen in the 10X50 binoculars.

NGC 2232 is bright, very large, not compressed and not rich at 100X. It is a scattered group of 22 stars including 10 Mon.

NGC 2236 is pretty bright, pretty small and somewhat compressed at 165X. It is composed of about 25 pretty faint stars in a group that has a 9th mag star in the center.

NGC 2237 is a part of the Rosette Nebula. It is large enough that it got several numbers in the NGC (2237-8-9 and 2246) because when William Herschel discovered this nebula it would only fit into his scope in smaller pieces. This area of the winter Milky Way is a naked eye bright spot that will start to show the nebula in a pair of binoculars or a large finder. My 10 X 50 binoculars or 11 X 80 finder will show a horseshoe of nebulosity around a scattered star cluster. The 13" at 60X with a 38mm Giant Erfle eyepiece will show several dark lanes in the nebula. The nebulosity is annular and brightest on the SW edge. A UHC filter makes the nebula stand out much better and defines the contrast with the dark lanes. With the 6" f/6 and a 22mm Panoptic eyepiece the nebulosity can just be seen on a mediocre night that I rated 5/10 for seeing and contrast. Adding the UHC filter really makes a difference in the visibility of the nebula, it forms a wide horseshoe around the bright cluster of stars and is most easy to see on the western side. The cluster contains 19 stars.

White Tanks 6" f/6 22mm no filter pretty faint neby to west side, large, blob in a curved shape. Going to UHC and the hood makes a big difference. The neby surrounds the cluster on all sides. There are several dark markings on East side, and 4 thin dark lanes that cut across the nebulosity. A nice view. 13" on Sentinel, great night T=10! Borrowed 35mm Panoptic and 2" UHC filter--fabulous view. 11 elephant trunks wind through the nebula. It is pretty bright, extremely large and Annular, brightest in the NW quadrant. There are 71 stars involved in the nebula.


NGC 2244 is the star cluster involved in the Rosette. In the 13" at 60X it consists of 2 parallel lines of about 15 stars. It is very bright, very large and not compressed. Several of the stars are yellow and one is a lovely orange. On the best of evenings, this area is a bright spot in the Winter Milky Way to the unaided eye.

White Tanks Mt. 6" f/6 very bright, very large, 38 stars counted, somewhat scattered, not compressed. Two parallel lines of stars and more outliers.

NGC 2245 is pretty bright, pretty small and fan-shaped with a star of about 11th mag at the apex. This is a fainter version of Hubble's Variable Nebula.

NGC 2251 is bright, pretty large, elongated and contains about 40 stars in a very nice Milky Way field. It is pretty rich and not compressed at 100X. A noticeable bright spot in 10X50 binocs.

NGC 2259 is bright, pretty large, round, rich and very compressed at 100X. I resolved 15 stars against a very grainy background at 220X. This is a nice, tight cluster, try some power.

NGC 2261 is Hubble's Variable Nebula. Edwin Hubble took many photos of this comet-shaped nebula that show changes in its form. The best explanation is dark masses inside the nebulosity that drift in front of R Mon, the star that illuminates the gas. These drifting dark clouds cast shadows on the glowing gas. There is a set of pictures in Burnham's that show these changes. As a matter of fact, this object is the answer to a good trivia question. It was the first object photographed with the 200" telescope when it was put into operation in 1949. In the 13" at 135X it is bright, pretty large, much elongated and has a much brighter star involved. It appears as a small comet and the star R Mon is very obvious at the tip. The south side is brighter and the west side is more elongated. At 200X there are some dark markings within the nebulosity. I have inspected this object at high power several times and I believe that I have seen changes but there are differences in seeing, transparency, observing site and telescope from time to time. I plan to observe this object over a longer period to see if I can pick out obvious differences when some of the other variables are removed.

Granite Wash Mt. S=7 T=9 13" Wow nite 100X--seen as comet shape even with low power. 330X--high power brings out lots of detail. Dark lane on south end, between R Mon and rest of neby. West side of neby is much brighter, averted vision makes it grow.

NGC 2262 is pretty faint, pretty large, round, much compressed and not brighter in the middle. At 165X it resolves the fainter stars and has a nice mottled effect across the face of the cluster.

NGC 2264 is a brighter naked eye spot in the Milky Way that marks the location of this large, bright and not compressed star cluster. Because of the shape of the brighter stars, this is called the Xmas tree cluster and includes the variable S Mon within the tree shape. Binoculars or finder will show the tree outline with ease. The cluster is involved in a faint nebulosity that is brightest near S Mon and on the north side of the cluster. With the 38mm Erfle and the UHC filter the nebula extends for 2 degrees around the star cluster. At 100X with the UHC a dark lane can be seen in the nebula, this is the Cone Nebula. There are very few faint stars in this region a measure of the amount of dark nebulosity that permeates this entire region.

NGC 2282 is a pretty faint, pretty large emission nebula with several stars involved at 100X. The UHC filter doesn't help on this object.

NGC 2286 is pretty bright, large, rich and somewhat compressed at 165X. I counted 52 stars as members with lots of faint stars forming a lumpy "oatmeal" background with several dark lanes winding through the cluster.

NGC 2301 has been a favorite of mine for many years. This open cluster is bright, large and pretty rich with about 40 members. It is easy to pick out in the finder scope. The aspect of this cluster which makes me return each winter is a lovely blue and gold double star right in the center. There is a clear area around the double star. If you have missed this beautiful cluster, put it on your list. Salome Rd. 6" f/6 S+T=7 14mm--pretty bright, pretty large, pretty compressed and pretty rich. 27 stars counted. The yellow and blue pair is not as obvious in the RFT. In a very rich Winter MW field.

NGC 2302 is pretty bright, pretty large, not rich and not compressed at 100X. There are about 25 members to this scattered group.

NGC 2309 is pretty bright, pretty small and somewhat compressed. It has about 15 members at 100X.

NGC 2311 is pretty bright, pretty small, not rich and somewhat compressed at 165X. I counted 22 stars in a triangular shape.

NGC 2323 (M 50) is bright, large, round, somewhat compressed and pretty rich at 100X. It is easy in the finder and I estimated 100 members or so. There are several nice chains of stars with an orange one on the SE edge. From Sentinel on a night I rated 8/10 S+T there are 5 stars resolved in the 10X50 binoculars and this is shown as an obvious cluster in the Winter Milky Way. At 60X in the 13" it is bright, very large, rich, pretty compressed and I counted 42 members resolved. There is a nice orange star of 9th mag on the south side. The stars are from 10 to 12th magnitude and there are several delicate pairs. At 100X the cluster is shown off quite well, 63 stars are counted, the orange star is more prominent. Going to 150X has the cluster fill about 60% of the field, this splits many doubles and seems to show all the stars contained in this group, very few faint members are seen. Several beautiful curved chains of stars and several orange members are easy. It is just seen naked eye.

6" f/6 Sun Valley 6/10 just naked eye visible. 22mm--18 stars counted. Bright, large, much compressed, rich, much brighter middle, an obvious cluster with nice chains of stars that wind out into the Milky Way. 8.8mm--42 stars and a fuzzy background, a great view with several curved chains of stars and 4 light orange members.

NGC 2324 is bright, large, rich and compressed at 165X. I counted 55 stars with a rich background of dimmer members. This sparkling cluster is elongated 2X1 in PA 45.

NGC 2335 is pretty faint, pretty large and not compressed. It has about 15 members at 100X.

NGC 2343 is pretty bright, small, not rich and not compressed at 100X. I counted 23 stars including a yellow and blue double star on the eastern edge of the cluster. I estimated the double to have a separation of 10" and a PA of 315 degrees. This cluster was seen in my 11X80 finderscope.

NGC 2346 Buckeye 7/10 S+T 100X--pretty faint, pretty small, little elongated 1.2X1 in PA 60. Going to 220X shows it more obviously. It is light green and there is an easy and obvious blinking effect, between a pretty bright central star and the nebulosity. Adding the UHC filter diminishes the blinking effect because the nebulosity is much more evident and the contrast is much better.

NGC 2353 is pretty bright, pretty large, pretty rich and not compressed. It is a nice cluster at 135X, with about 50 members. The UHC filter will just barely show a very faint streamer of nebulosity on the south side. Rocking the scope helps to make the nebula more noticeable.

NGC 2506 is bright, pretty large, compressed and rich at 100X. It has about 40 members that are obvious and a hazy background, even at higher powers.

IC 466 Very faint, pretty small, little elongated, not much at 100X with the UHC filter. A very dim nebulosity in a very rich Milky Way field, only seen with averted vision and the UHC.

IC 2177 is a very faint, very large, 5X1 elongated streamer of nebulosity that ends in NGC 2335 cluster. The nebula can be seen best with the UHC filter at 100X and averted vision helps quite a bit. The central part of the streamer is the brightest.

Mel 72 is pretty bright, pretty large, pretty rich and somewhat compressed at 165X. It has about 40 members in a triangular shape.


DOUBLE STARS

Beta Mon is easily split at 135X. It is a nice obtuse triangle of stars, all are white. I wonder what astronomers do on a planet with three suns?

8 Mon is easy to split at 100X. The stars are white and greenish.