Comet PanSTARRS

Its been almost three weeks since Comet PanSTARRS popped into the night sky for us and sadly I’ve hardly seen it. Life and weather have gotten in the way. Also the comets in a poor spot, setting before its really dark and low in the sky. I was lucky to get out a few times. On Tuesday, March 12th, Phil and I caught our first glimpse of the comet from the Flint Hills. Here it is setting in the evening sky, right next to a slender moon:

The comet and moon are only a few degrees above the horizon at that time. An hour later it was truly dark and the zodiacal light was a bright cone in this exact location. The next night I went to the AAL public observing of comet PanSTARRS in Lawrence. A number of people came out as you can see in the next picture:

Ironically I got a better view of the comet from the KU campus then I did from the previous nights trip. The sky was just a bit clearer.

There is one big difference between the two nights: I didn’t get that wonderful dark sky full of stars like I did the first night. The trip was worth that alone and I wish the people that came out in Lawrence had gotten a chance to see that.