M17 – NGC 6618 – The Omega/Swan/Horseshoe And Most Recently “The Winn-Dixie Nebula” – Sagittarius – Observer’s Challenge – July 2012 – Updated: October 6th 2012

M17 would have to rate as one of the finest and most interesting objects of the entire Messier list.  It is bright with the checkmark shape easily seen with the smallest of scopes under good skies.  The first time I observed M17 was during the mid-70’s with my 4 1/4-inch Edmund reflector under terrible conditions. I was living in a rented house with seemingly hundreds of streetlights in close proximity.  I used a corner of my house to help shield the worst of the lights, however, I was still able to find and see the M17, but only the main bar, and not the hook.  

An amateur from North Carolina that I have known for many years has always said that M17 looked like the famous “Winn-Dixie” checkmark.  Can you see this with the main bar and hook? 

Please click on the following link for the complete report…

JULY 2012 OBSERVERS CHALLENGE – M-17

All of the Observer’s Challenge Reports are also posted on the  LVAS website, and the “Worlds of Fred Rayworth” and both links are listed to the right on my website under “blog roll.”  

Thanks again, and enjoy….Roger Ivester

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