Posted by Paul Abel at 20:03 on 2013 Jan 01
I record this as my worst ever year, and certainly the wettest, it has been truly appalling. The first part of 2012, Saturn was present in Virgo. On an average year I would hope to make around 25-30 observations and around 30-35 disk drawings. This year I got just 10 observations. It was notable that there were no clear nights between January 13th and 19th March here in Leicester, or if there was a clearing it was infrequent or unusable. There were just two clear nights in March and three in April. May was a little better and this meant that I was able to make 23 observations of Venus which was at eastern elongation which I observed from 2012 January 02- 2012 May 26th.June -September was devoid of planets but this was academic since we had some of the worst torrential rain over these months I’ve ever experienced in Leicester. For the first time I can recall, the manhole covers were blown out from a number of main roads, the water pressure in the sewers being that formidable. The cloud has continued and has badly interrupted my Jupiter observations- just three clear nights in November. The last useable clear night here (we have brief clear spells intermixed with heavy rain) was 5th-6th December. This was my last Jupiter observation.I also note just how unreliable the Met office has become. At the time of writing it has predicted clear spells for the region and yet we are clouded out. Their predictions are so unreliable now I no longer bother with them and use Satellite 24 to make my own predictions, along with the jet stream forecast to assess how good/bad the seeing is.In short, 2012 was the worst year of my observing career.Best wishes,-Paul.