Weekend Viewing
Area 51 in Big Cypress National Preserve
January 7&8, 2005
Fred Lehman

Although the clarity of the daytime sky gave the promise clear skies at night, a low but thick haze dominated the scene both nights. Each night was marginal just after sunset, with conditions deteriorating rapidly as darkness fell. By 10 PM the haze gave way to clouds. Astrophotography was almost out of the question, but short glimpses of most objects could be captured in the small holes between the clouds. There was a persistent turbulence even in the clear spots, so everyone left for home much earlier than normal for this place in the Everglades.

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