Summer Sky Tour Home Page


Every year, in July, our Boy Scout Troop heads off to the North Woods of Wisconsin for a week of summer camp. It's been known on (rare) occasion to rain or cloud over at night, but when it's clear, the sky is stunning. On those nights we never fail to get out our binoculars and telescopes and head down to the lakefront for stargazing.

The account here is the agenda that I loosely follow in providing a guided tour of the summer skies as visible from 45 North Latitude. This tour is designed for one topic to lead to the next, so it flows nicely and still manages to teach Astronomy under the night sky as we caravan from one constellation to another. Aside from the binoculars and telescopes I usually make a point of also bringing a highly focused flashlight which serves as an effective pointer for tracing out constellations.

Note that this tour is specifically designed to meet requirements 5, 7 and 8 (b) of the Astronomy merit badge, although of course there are lots of other tidbits here that go beyond the requirements of the badge.

View to the South


View to the North


Index to the Tour

Polar Constellations
Botes
Virgo
Cepheus
Sagittarius
Scorpius
Up the Milky Way
Lyra
Hercules
Draco


Overview of the Tour

The blue arrows map out the basic flow of the tour.

The Top Attractions

Time might be limited, if it's chilly, if conditions are changing, if the bugs are bad or else if time is just limited. In that case, these are the best items to hit - the ones that the kids (and the adults) are talking about days later.

Feature Naked Eye Binoculars Telescope
Mizar & Alcor
d Cephei
The Scorpion's Claws (Libra)
The Lagoon & Trifid Nebulae
The Coathanger
Albireo
The Double Double
The Ring Nebula
M13


Back to Stargazing Home Page On to Polar Constellations

Summer Sky Tour in Word This entire web site in an MS Word document.


Links

Goddard Space Flight Center Hubble Site The best Hubble web site in my "hubble" opinion

The SEDS Messier Catalog -- a great reference for more information and images of the Messier Catalog deep sky objects.

Views of the Solar System Excellent reference on the solar system, well organized and packed with goodies.


Questions

Your questions and comments regarding this page are welcome. You can e-mail Randy Culp for inquiries, suggestions, new ideas or just to chat.
Updated 31 October 2011