If you have undertaken, or participated in, a Messier Marathon, 2019 or earlier, if not already done so, please send me your or your group's results, or the link to your results page, for inclusion in our Messier Marathon Results page!
Deepsky enthusiasts can look for additional clusters, nebulae, and galaxies. While you can certainly pick and observe whatever you like, we also provide a list of additional deepsky objects to select from (also available with data).
It is always delightful to add to the Messier Marathon the observation of as many of the planets as possible, with Uranus and Neptune at least extremely difficult on the primary weekend.
Some comets brighter than about mag 14.0 will be visible; we will list them below from various sources (e.g., IAU's Observable Comets page, Skyhound's Comet Chasing page, Gary Kronk's list of current comets, Seiichi Yoshida's Visual Comet lists for the northern and southern hemisphere, and the Fachgruppe Kometen list):
Comet RA (2000.0) Dec mag RA (2000.0) Dec mag March 10, 2019 March 31, 2019 78P/Gehrels 2 01:10:42.8 +07:15:42 13.9 01:58:26.1 +11:10:05 13.9 C/2018 Y1 (Iwamoto) 04:50:11.9 +34:16:51 12.9 04:26:02.9 +33:22:12 14.4 46P/Wirtanen 09:43:04.1 +42:44:15 10.9 09:58:36.9 +35:55:33 13.5 123P/West-Hartley 11:18:58.1 +31:45:40 12.7 11:04:14.7 +29:26:34 13.0 C/2017 M4 (ATLAS) 17:31:43.7 -22:54:15 13.7 17:20:32.7 -28:06:39 13.5 C/2016 M1 (PANSTARRS) 03:57:09.0 -58:02:11 12.7 04:28:21.9 -49:21:23 13.1The last of these comets is only accessible for southern observers.
Note that occasionally comets become bright shortly (like Hyakutake in 1996, Hale-Bopp in 1997, Ikeya-Zhang and Utsunomiya in 2002), so check back for possible updates shortly before Marathon date. Also occasionally, a supernova of brightness available to amateur telesopes may have flashed up be spottable in time (like SN 1998S in NGC 3877, SN 2002ap in M74, SN 2006X in M100, SN 2012aw in M95, and SN 2014J in M82 in their years of appearance).
This year, of the "first" four minor planets, three will be easily available, while (4) Vesta will be probably impossible because of small elongation to the Sun. (3) Juno will be visible in the evening, (2) Pallas best around midnight, (1) Ceres in the morning. For those who want to try these objects, data for the two weekends in question are as follows:
Planet RA (2000.0) Dec mag RA (2000.0) Dec mag March 10, 2019 March 31, 2019 (1) Ceres 16:42:08.3 -16:01:11 8.5 16:52:25.4 -16:31:08 8.2 (2) Pallas 14:11:02.8 +07:58:26 8.1 14:02:31.9 +15:07:19 7.9 (3) Juno 04:42:29.1 +09:11:59 9.4 05:19 18.6 +12:02:41 9.7 (4) Vesta 23:22:15.1 -08:57:46 7.9 00:00 13.1 -05:09:06 8.0
Also, meteors from various showers may occur, and depending on your location, you may be able to observe the International Space Station, ISS.
Please send me any results of your Messier Marathon for inclusion in our Messier Marathon Results page!
Last Modification: January 24, 2019