I joined a couple of observers on their trip to Mount John Observatory for a few nights. What a place of science, beauty and adventure! Running around on a grassy mountain, swimming in a clear and cold Lake Tekapo, watching an absolutely gorgeous night sky. The southern sky really is more interesting than the northern one: the centre of the Milky Way, the Magellanic Clouds, new constellations and star-clusters for me to discover. I have a new favourite constellation now. Surrounded by wind-swept plains, snowy mountains in the distance. The silence, the clean air. There aren't words enough for the beauty of this place. It just feels like home. If I ever want to do this settling-down thing, New Zealand certainly seems like the place to be. Life is great.
Here, have some pictures. My cellphone camera isn't up for snuff when it comes to astrophotography, so you'll have to be content with daytime photos.
Love and observations,