Clark Lake Observatory

Cottage with home astrophotography observatory, covered in Snow even though it's still March

Buried deep in the Canadian shield is my little cottage and home observatory. Although sitting beside a lake isn’t always great for seeing conditions, the remoteness of the cottage eliminates most light pollution and I get to enjoy Bortle 2.5 to 3.0 skies.

Not only is there a lack of light pollution, but living in a forest has the added benefit of having very few other lights to deal with. There’s a trade off however, a lot more trees to my south over the cottage.

360 View from the Lake

Panorama from the Lake

Main Imaging Rig

Celestron 8" Schmidt Cassegrain

Telescope:
Celestron 8″ Schmidt Cassegrain
Specs & Review

ZWO ASI294 MC Pro Cooled Astrophotography Camera

Camera:
ZWO ASI294 MC Pro Cooled
Specs & Review

Focuser:
Celestron Auto-Focuser for SCTs
Specs & Review

Power:
Pegasus Powerbox
Specs & Review

Celestron AVX Mount

Mount:
Celestron AVX Equatorial Mount
Specs & Review

QHY Polemaster Polar Aligning Camera

Alignment:
QHY Polemaster
Specs & Review

Guider:
Orion Starshoot w/ 50mm Scope
Specs & Review

Secondary / Widefield Rig

Telescope:
William Optics Redcat51
Specs & Review

Mount/Tracker:
iOptron Skytracker Pro
Specs & Review

Additional Gear

Camera:
Unmodified Canon 50D
Specs & Review

Lens:
Sigma 105mm f2.8 DG HSM Macro
Specs & Review

Lens:
Rokinon 14mm f2.8
Specs & Review

Accessory:
Celestron Dewshield
Specs & Review

Telescope & Mount:
Celestron Nexstar 4SE
Specs & Review

Lens:
Sigma 30mm f1.4 DC HSM
Specs & Review

Accessory:
Celestron Starsense Autoalign
Specs & Review

Skyshed Pod Observatory

Observatory on the deck

Skyshed Pod logo

I purchased a home observatory from Wayne at Skyshed Pod in the spring of 2019. By July, I had it delivered to the lake and had it assembled on my new deck.

The PC that powered the equipment had an unfortunate run in with frost in January, and I lost my power supply. After an few small upgrades and some creative wiring, HDMI & USB cables now run into the house to avoid problems in the future.

Software

Sequence Generator Pro
Sequence Generator Pro controls most of my equipment and related software (CPWI, PHD2).
Deep Sky Stacker takes my lights, darks & flat frames to create a TIF file for processing.
Photoshop logo
I’ve been a lifelong user of Adobe Photoshop, which suits all of my processing needs.

Sky Conditions

Otter Lake Clear Sky Chart