Observatory in Slottsskogen

It was dark all around. In complete silence I was approaching entrance to the largest park in Gothenburg – Slottsskogen. Scary shapes of trees were lighted up by dimmish moon and scattered street lamps. It was not the central entrance but another one – from the side of Masthugget area. Very soon I have passed old Water Tower and continued walking. In several meters I saw a sign to an observatory pointing to the right.

Actually I have heard that there is an observatory in Slottsskogen, but I, honestly, had no idea where exactly and if it is actually working. Thanks to my new friend Katja Lindblom who is working there – I was invited to take a look on stars. So I did. The observatory is quite small building, however is well-equipped. Surprisingly, when I came there were a lot of people, and there was even a line of visitors. It was quite mixed public – from old couples to kids with parents.

Sirius (Photo from Wikipedia)

I came to the telescopes hall. Katja has already started showing to gathered public all interesting things that could be observed tonight. We started with big star – Betelgeuse. It was the great view, star were so bright! Some mix between red and green, it is very hard to explain. Actually Betelgeuse is eighth-brightest star in the night sky, and alfa of the constellation Orion. The whole constellation of Orion was possible to see also.  Then we started to see Sirius – the brightest start in the night sky. Colors were mixing and changing all the time. As Katja explained – it’s not because of the start itself, but due to the atmosphere of Earth, that affect observation.

Jupiter in the night sky (Photo from http://www.shvedun.ru/)

Afterwards telescopes were turned to closer objects. Tonight Jupiter was in a good position to be observed.  Just after a one second I put my eye into ocular I felt myself stiffen with astonishment. Jupiter was glorious. Carefully observer could possibly even notice movements in gas atmosphere of that giant planet in Solar system. Observing Jupiter I heard a music inside myself – it was a peace from The Planet Suite by Gustaf Holst – Jupiter, the bringer of Jollity.

It was undoubtedly breathtaking evening!

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