June 5 Transit of Venus – Location

Please be sure to arrive before 2:30 pm–and please READ THE INSTRUCTIONS below for important warnings.

After hours and hours of scouting locations from the beach to the mountains yesterday, it is clear, and I use that word for a reason, that the viewing location should be at the Lake Poway recreation area in Poway, CA.   See Map

At 4:30 pm yesterday, a time that would be about halfway through the Transit event on Tuesday, the infamous coastal fog was already rolling in, and by 7 pm, the end time for the Transit event, it was quite pronounced. The weather is supposed to be cloudier on Tuesday, so the prudent thing to do is go inland. I know, it’s a haul, and I don’t like it any more than you do, but its the only way to get away from the marine layer and get an unobstructed view of the sky.

Here are the directions:

From the 5 freeway, take the 56 freeway East to Poway. Stay on it past the 15, at which point it becomes Ted Williams Parkway. You will eventually come to Pomerado Road. Keep going and get in the right lane. At the next light, Twin Peaks, turn right. Ted Williams Parkway ends at Twin Peaks, so you either have to go left or right. Go right. Go down Twin Peaks road to Espola Rd. and turn left. Go up a few miles and turn right at the light for Lake Poway. There is a gate there that will be open, and there is a large parking lot on the right side after you get in that I will be set up in.

 

IMPORTANT, PLEASE READ THOROUGHLY:
  1. If possible, come early. The transit begins about 3 pm. This is a popular event, and the parking lot may fill up. As it is a public park, I have no control over this.
  2. Bring water, a lawn chair, sunscreen, hat, sunglasses, and any munchies you might like. Cameras are welcome.
  3. There are well-stocked bathrooms very near the parking lot, but I will try to remember to bring a roll of TP, just in case. You should, too, just to be on the safe side.
  4. Children are VERY welcome. They’re probably the only ones who have any chance of seeing the next transit (in 105 years), so it would be cool for them to be able to say they saw two in their lifetime. HOWEVER, due to the expense of the equipment that will be present, it is imperative that all children be well-behaved and under direct supervision of a responsible adult. No running, jumping, or rowdy behavior within 25 feet of my equipment. If your child damages my equipment, YOU WILL BE HELD RESPONSIBLE.  I will also be doing an “astronomy talk” during the transit, answering questions and providing background information on Venus, the Sun, and any other astronomical topics that arise. You and your child will be asked to leave if he or she is not respectful of the fact that I’m talking to the group as a whole. Thank you for your understanding.
  5. I have several pairs of the special glasses for viewing the Sun, so you don’t need to worry about that.
  6. It will be warm during the day, and may get chilly by the time the Transit is over. DRESS ACCORDINGLY. I strongly recommend bringing a jacket for the evening hours.
  7. The park closes at 8 pm. As in the gate closes, and no one can get out. Thus, we are leaving by 8 pm. The transit will end around 7, and I am more than happy to stay afterwards and answer questions, or provide more viewing, if anything is out that we can look at. But, we all MUST be packed up and out of there by 8 pm.
  8. Please email me if you have any questions.

I’m looking forward to seeing all of you on Tuesday. This is an exciting, last time of our lifetimes opportunity, and an event that demonstrates one of the methods by which astronomers find extrasolar planets. I will be talking about this on Tuesday, and encourage you to bring questions. I may even bring some demonstration materials.

 

Thanks!

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