Friday, November 22, 2013

The DC Women's Hiking Group will hike Tues., Nov. 26th at Topstone Park in Redding, CT.

Take Topstone Rd. off of Rt. 7.
Follow road over RR tracks until it becomes a dirt road.
Shortly after, a parking area will be on the right side of the road.
Meet at 8:30am.
No hike on Thursday, November 28th.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 18, 2013

The DC Women's Hiking Group will hike at Pine Mountain in Ridgefield on Tues., Nov., 19th and Thurs., Nov., 21st.
Take Ridgebury Rd. to George Washington Highway.
Make right on to Pine Mountain Rd.
Parking area will be near end of road.
Meet at 8:30am.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Constellation of the Month - Cassiopeia, the "W"

Cassiopeia is a "W"- shaped constellation.  It's high in the sky towards the East soon after sunset in November. 

Cassiopeia is an interesting constellation for several reasons:

1. It's Circumpolar: It's one of a few constellations that never rise and never set – for viewers in earth's Northern Hemisphere. They just (appear to) go in circles around the North Star -- every day a circle, and every year a much slower circle. At 6AM it will be low in the sky to the north, and 6 months from now in the evening, it will be about the same place.
If you lived at the North Pole, all the stars you could see would be circumpolar. But they'd only be half the stars in the sky, because the other half -- which you would never see -- would be circumpolar for those penguins looking up from the South Pole.

2. It's always opposite the Big Dipper, with the North Star about midway between them. So, if you look north from Cassiopeia, and keep going north and lower in the sky, you'll find the Big Dipper low in the north. 3 months ago and 3 months from now, they were and will be opposite each other east to west.

3. The band of the Milky Way goes through it. We're in the Milky Way galaxy, which is shaped like a disk. When we see it as a fuzzy band of many, many stars, we're looking along the plane of the disk, so we see what looks like a band of stars. When we look anywhere except along this plane we just see a few stars that are close, and that's what the rest of the sky (outside the band) looks like.

In ancient mythology, Cassiopeia is the Queen to King Cepheus, our October 2013 constellation of the month. 

The DC Women's Hiking Group will hike Thursday, Nov. 7th at Florida Refuge in Ridgefield.
There is no school on Tuesday the 5th, so no hike.

Take Rt. 7 and turn onto Florida Hill Road. Make a right onto High Valley Road.
Park along the side of High Valley Road closest to Florida Hill Road.
Meet at 8:30am.