The Lion’s Den

Welcome to the Lion’s den where the Leo Triplet Galaxies (aka M66 Group) adorn the nights skies. This beautiful trio can be found in the constellation of Leo some 35 million light years away from Earth. Each of spiral galaxies take on different shapes and tilts adding to their distinct characters when framed in the same image. The M66 Group is yet another reason why you should look up and experience an amazing universe!

Mount: Explore Scientific EXOS2GT mount

Camera: Altair Hypercam 183MC (fan cooled)

Main Scope: Skywatcher ED72 APO + flattener + Altair Quadband OSC filter

Guiding: Svbony 30mm f/4 + ASI120MC

Exif: 28 frames at 300 seconds Gain 400; Offset 30; focal length 420mm; f/5.6

APP, PixInsight Photoshop, PHD2


  1. Another lovely capture! I’m always in awe at the beauties that lie out there. I learnt that these three emit the collected light of more than half a trillion stars. HALF A TRILLION! Mind blowing. I am guessing this explains some of that beautiful shimmer that I am seeing here. Just stunning!

  2. Beautiful! I also loved looking for galaxies optically with my 6-in Dynascope Reflector.
    I believe that I was able to locate this group myself. Of course just through a basic eyepiece the galaxies appeared as mostly gray smudges .
    The reflector actually did a good job though on revealing the colors of individual Stars which was also quite a treat and why I enjoyed looking at objects such as the Jewel Box.
    Another nightly challenge was attempting to split various double Stars, and as I mentioned the optics on my scope were pretty good for what it was so in fact was able to do quite well splitting some very close pairs. That was always an enjoyable evening game!

    Thanks for sharing all your Astro shots! They’re always great as usual!


    1. It’s always encouraging to hear of your own exploits of years passed. We truly have to give you a forum to share your knowledge and experience. Very inspiring to me.

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