Time: 27 Oct 2005, 1:30 am through 2:30 am
Naked eye limiting star magnitude ~3.8 (Houston light pollution is horrendous).
Equipment: Celestron Ultima 8x56 binoculars, handheld
Amazing clarity in the sky - if only i were far enough away from Houston to see more deep sky objects!
Mars is the brightest object in the sky, apparent magnitude -2.21. Disk resolves through binocs, but no detail apparent.
Great Nebula in Orion visible with naked eye; much detail evident through binoculars.
Open cluster M45 - the Pleiades - visible to the naked eye, very nice view through binocs. I think I even could just see the reflection nebula around Merope, but it may have been my imagination. I think there was too much light pollution to see that.
Using constellation Cassiopeia, I scouted for M31 - the Andromeda Galaxy. For the first time in my backyard, I found it. With dark enough skies, it is visible to the naked eye. Not in my backyard.
Again using Cassiopeia, I found open cluster NGC 884.
Nothing else of note visible -- too much light pollution. Below Orion, the limiting naked-eye magnitude was ~2.8!