Stargazing: Orion's Belt, Betelgeuse — Fairbanks, AK, USA (publ. 2023-11-03)

Last Wednesday (Nov 1st) I was able to go out for a brief stargazing session just before work, out at the boat launch. Time was short, so I brought only my binoculars and the tri-pod. I mainly used the time to look at Orion's Belt. Here is an approximation of my view in Stellarium:

Orion's Belt

The three bright stars, from right to left, are lettered δ (delta), ε (epsilon), and ζ (zeta) in Orion. Seems like there are a lot of memorable patterns here. The stars to the left (east) of δ make a rough half-circle. The bottom of that half-circle trails off into a wavy shape that looks like a letter "M", or two mountain peaks, tilted 90 degrees to clockwise. ζ is wedged in-between these two sets of curvy triplets of stars. And δ, ε, and ζ together, taken with the two bright stars above and below ζ, make a rough arrow shape.

I spent a few minutes look around Betelgeuse as well, the shoulder of Orion. Betelgeuse has an amber color, as opposed to the bluish color of the belt stars.


It was a nice little stargazing session (about 25 minutes) but the waning moon gibbous was still very bright. I'm looking forward to looking at Orion again under dark skies, God willing.

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