Lunar impact, light pollution, and the sky above South San Francisco Bay

At 4 a.m. last night (this morning?), my friend Ted and I were on Skyline Drive in San Mateo County, finishing setting up a 12-inch telescope that we share. We were attempting to watch the explosion from the NASA LCROSS satellite hitting the moon, and like most observers, we didn’t see an explosion. Still, we had some great views of the moon and the Orion Nebula, so it was still worth it.

We went up to Skyline to escape the fog blanketing lower areas, and we ended up having some of the best night skies I’ve seen in the area, because the fog blanked out most of the light pollution from down below.
It was a great reminder that one of our natural resources that Committee for Green Foothills seeks to protect is our dark skies and the ability to see the stars. When we fight the ridiculously light-polluting lamps spilling out from the Lehigh-Hanson quarry, that’s just one example, and we’re watching for other problems as well.

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