M97 “The Owl Nebula” PN in Ursa Major

I have observed M97 many times from my moderately light polluted back yard, located in Boiling Springs, North Carolina. However, I have never been able to see both eyes with my 10-inch f/4.5 reflector. Most of the time, even with good sky conditions, it appears mostly round and featureless. The nebula is easily seen at low power, but with little or no detail. Only on one occasion, I have noted a single eye, but again, never both, using 160x and averted vision.  When using a 24mm eyepiece with a 60° apparent field, at 48x, both M97 and M108 are nicely framed in the 1.3° FOV.

Roger Ivester

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