Peak Star Party - Home

PSP Friends

Many thanks to the following for their help and support...

Moon Phase

Moon phase


12 days

231,531 Miles

09:33:53 GMT


mod_psdn_moonphase by

Radio Propagations

Solar X-rays:
Geomagnetic field:
D-Region Absorption
Created by PA4RM

Site Rules

Site Rules (from Shallow Grange Farm)

  1. All guests are expected to refer to the Site Rules at the entrance to the touring field.
    You will be asked to leave if you do not follow these rules and may damage Peak Star Party's reputation for future years.
  2. Shallow Grange is a working farm. Watch out for machinery, electric fences, gates (which should be left as found), cattle grids, etc. and please stick to the public footpath across the farm.
  3. Parents - please ensure that all children are supervised and that you know where they are at all times. Please ensure that they keep out of the private areas, that they stay on the public footpath and that they do not go to the pond unaccompanied.
  4. Please recycle all waste in the bins provided.
  5. Please do not place barbecues directly on the grass.
  6. Strictly no generators may be used anywhere in Shallow Grange.
  7. In wet conditions, cars are not permitted on the touring or camping field except to pitch and unpitch.
    Yellow flags will be shown in such conditions and marshals will provide guidance.
  8. Please clean up after your dog and keep it on a lead at all times while anywhere on the farm.
  9. Please read and follow the fire notices.
  10. Please do not drive to the shower block. Disabled campers and those needing to empty caravan waste, please use the main gate to the caravan park.
  11. No music is to be played at any time. If you would like to listen to music, please use headphones and keep the sound levels down.
  12. Please keep noise to a minimum after 10pm.
    This rule has been relaxed for Peak Star Party but please keep sound to a minimum around the residential pitches.
  13. Please do not climb or remove stone from the walls.
  14. Please contact the site owners at the farmhouse if you want to fish on the pond (you must provide your own equipment and must hold a valid rod license).
  15. Please vacate your pitch by 11am on the last day of your stay, unless you have agreed with the site owners to stay on after the Peak Star Party.
    Shallow Grange have agreed to relax this rule for Peak Star Party to allow for people who were up late on Sunday night.
  16. There are some lovely walks in the area. If you would like to borrow a map, please see a Peak Star Party marshal.

Star Party Etiquette

Star Party Etiquette

Above all, the Peak Star Party is intended to be a fun, social event. However, for the comfort and safety of all astronomers and other visitors, there are a number of rules we need to put in place:

  1. Strictly no white lights when red light rules are in force (see Programme). This means no car movements in the camping areas, all torches must be covered with red light filters and so on. 
  2. Please do not use laser pointers at any time - in a large crowd they can easily cause blinding and they may interfere with imaging. The only exception to this is the guided sky tours each evening where the guide may use a pointer.
  3. Please cover all laptop and other illuminated displays with red filters and turn brightness down as far as possible.
  4. Please keep dogs on a lead and supervise children at all times while at the Star Party or anywhere on Shallow Grange Farm. There are plenty of places easily accessible from Shallow Grange for walking dogs and playing games.
  5. Most people will be happy to let you look through their scope but always ask first. Imagers and people hunting for specific things may not be in a position to let you look through their scope at that time so please do not be offended by refusal.
  6. Never touch somebody else's equipment without asking and never touch a glass or mirrored optical surface.
  7. If you have the opportunity to observer the sun through a telescope, always follow the instructions of the demonstrator or scope owner. Observing the sun incorrectly through a telescope can result in the retina being instantly burnt off the back of your eye, causing permanent blindness.
  8. Please be considerate of other astronomers and guests at all times. Take good care when walking around that you do not obstruct another astronomer's view and be aware that some astronomers will sleep through the morning after a late night observing / imaging.
  9. Finally, because people usually don't read the Ts & Cs, two key points:
    • The Peak Star Party organisers accept no liability for loss, damage or theft and no insurance, etc. is provided other than the normal site insurance held by the site owners. All your equipment is brought at your own risk and you are advised to have appropriate insurance of your own in place.
    • Due to a number of constraints, we can not offer refunds unless the Peak Star Party is cancelled for reasons beyond our control. Cancellations are at the discretion of the organisers and are subject to a £25 administration fee per pitch.


What's Up?

Rough guide to rising and setting times... (no "rise" time - it is up at sunset; no "set" time - it is up at sunrise)

From Stellarium ( and various online sources.


  • Friday Oct 17: rising around 2am; a little past last quarter (28% illuminated)
  • Saturday Oct 18: rising around 3am; waning (20% illuminated)
  • Sunday Oct 19: rising around 4am; waning (13% illuminated)

Planets & Dwarf Planets

  • Mercury: rising about half an hour ahead of the sun so a good morning target. Very slim crescent with an apparent magnitude around 2.
  • Venus: rising about ten minutes before the sun at mag -3.5 or thereabouts so not really a viable target for PSP2014.
  • Mars: low in the southern sky and setting by 8pm, and a long way from opposition so not likely to be very interesting. Unless Comet Siding Spring (C/2013 A1) hits it on 19 Oct when it will be very interesting indeed!
  • Jupiter: rising around 1:15 am and rising high to about 44 degrees by sunrise. Fairly close to the moon so a nice photo opportunity...
  • Saturn: setting about an hour after the sun so it will be a very challenging target in the evening haze.
  • Uranus: close to opposition so rising around sunset and climbing to just over 40 degrees altitude by midnight. PSP2014 will be a great opportunity to view Uranus but don't expect more than a blue-green dot in all but the biggest scopes.
  • Neptune: also close to opposition but lower in the sky, reaching just over 26 degrees around 10pm and setting about 2:30am.
  • Pluto: hidden in the Milky Way and setting just before 10pm. Mag 14 so a very challenging target.
  • Ceres: setting about an hour after the sun and at mag 8.5, another very difficult target at PSP2014.
  • Haumea: setting about 10pm and mag 17.4, good luck if you are going after this one!
  • Eris: reaching 34 degrees just after midnight but just under mag 20 so imagers only for this, I think.


  • Comet Siding Spring (C/2013 A1): close to Mars and on the way in so a challenge to spot and not particularly interesting. Unless it actually hits Mars (1 in 120,000 chance) when the resulting fireball on Mars might be a lot less challenging to spot and very, very interesting!

Details of other notable comets will be added through the year.

Observer Lists

Here are a few lists of things you can observe. Note that not everything will be visible from Shallow Grange in October, but these lists are a great starting point.

Please let us know if there is anything else you think should be here!

  • Universe Today's Messier Catalogue: Great descriptions, images, star maps and observer notes for all 101 Messier Objects. These are some of the most beautiful objects in the sky and it's really odd to think that Charles Messier drew up his list so he could AVOID looking at them!
  • Astrospider's Lunar 100 List: A great starting point for lunar observing, the Lunar 100 list comprises 100 notable features on the moon's surface. The first items are very easy to see (the moon itself, the light / dark terminator, etc.), progressing to the very faintest features you will need a telescope to see. Using a pair of 20x80 bins, I can cover roughly the first third of the list.
  • Coldfield Observatory's 200 most beautiful double stars: This Top 200 list gives you the easiest and most beautiful double stars of the night sky, quickly found in your telescope. This is not, like many other lists, an extract from a database filtering the brightest double stars. It is a summary of 200 double stars easily spotted, easily split, and mostly with different and nice colours. All 200 doubles from this list are observed by the author, equipped with a 6 inch f8 Newtonian reflector. The magnification used was never higher than 200x. All doubles are not below the declination of -12.


Shopping cart

Cart empty

My Account

Latest Forum Posts

Forum offline