A full moon night is not good for the deep sky observation. But a waning moon is normally rising late enough in the night to give us time to observe a few deep sky objects before we watch the moon itself. This kind of astronomy workshop is a good opportunity to take stunning pictures. Here are a few ones.

Hydraulic power station in Gran Canaria

The company Red Electrica de España is planning to build a huge hydraulic power station between the dams of Soria and Chira in Gran Canaria.
This is quite near the area where we are going to stargaze at astroGC.
Fortunately the area being protected, the hydraulic power station will be underground.

The plan is to pump the water up when the wind turbines are producing more energy than the consumed energy on the island. And recover this energy when needed.
More info (in Spanish) here:
The canarian common kestrel (Falco Tinnunculus) is a small falcon abundant in Gran Canaria. Its name in Spanish is "Cernícalo". It is the most extended bird of prey specie in the canary islands. Its size is 30-35 cm from head to tail and 70-80 cm wingspan. 

As a specie, It is native of the Canary Island but not endemic. There are 2 subspecies: Dacotiae in Lanzarote and Fuerteventura and Canariensis in the rest of islands.
Its diet mainly consists of smaller birds, small mammals like mice (introduced in the canary islands). In Gran Canaria, the canarian common kestrel also hunts the endemic Gran Canarian giant lizard (Gallotia Stehlini). Those living near the urban centers also hunt caged birds like parakeets.

A gorge situated near Telde has been named after this bird. This is the "Barranco de los Cernícalos". This is an advisable place for a trekking tour because ot the abundant vegetation of the gorge.
On 24th March 2019, at astroGC we had a photo stop at the Mulato v…

When the moon let itself be loved

A half moon is nice to be observed through a powerful telescope. The raking light casts shadows of the moon's relief. When the sky is very clear and windless, using our 16 inches telescopes we still enjoy sharp images despite of magnifying 225 times!

One of our guest participating in our workshop last Wednesday put his mobile phone on the eyepiece and we took this nice picture of our natural satellite. Enjoy, and share. 


Cuando la luna se deja querer... esta foto ha sido realizada por uno de nuestros clientes usando nuestro telescopio. Aunque amplificada 225 veces, la imagen sigue nítida.

As many people are contacting me regarding the next moon eclipse. Here is a little sum up of what will happen in one week, during the night from 20th to 21st January.

A lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth is between the Sun and the Moon. The Earth casts a reddish shadow on the moon. Because of the alignment of the Sun, the Earth and the Moon this can only happen when the moon is full. And it will be visible exclusively during the night. The lunar eclipse last for a few hours. Thus, it is visible from approximately half the world. From the night side of the planet during the eclipse.

Here is the timing of the next lunar eclipse as it will be seen from Gran Canaria Island. Because it hapens during the second half of the night we will not organise any special event for this lunar eclipse at astroGC.

21/01/2019 at 3:45
21/01/2019 at 4:20
21/01/2019 at 5:10
21/01/2019 at 6:00
21/01/2019 at 6:30

The Gran Canaria island is said to be a "miniature continent". It has many different landscapes. The weather can also be very different from one point to another. Actually the weather IS usually different in the South, the North, East, West or Center. Having a cloudy sky in Maspalomas area this does not mean the top of the island is cloudy as well.

Case A: Trade winds blowing. Very usual during summer time.
Case B: Storm entering the island from South-West. This happens more often during winter.
Case C: Low clouds (the top of the island is clear).
Case D: Calima. This is dust coming from Sahara desert.

Yesterday, 29 December 2018 we had a case similar to C. The sky was completely covered in Maspalomas and Puerto Rico area during the evening and at night. It was also covered in the East and North of the island. Nevertheless this were low clouds.

The astroGC astronomy excursion took place despite of the weather being a bit uncertain. At astroGC, guests do not have to pay if the weat…
We wish you a merry Christmas and clear skies for 2019 !

Picture of the moon taken yesterday from Presa del Mulato, Gran Canaria.during the astroGC astronomy workshop.