Re: Satellite watching a recent event?

James Husnay Sr. (
Sat, 13 Mar 1999 19:54:22 -0500

ykChia wrote:

> At 07:00 AM 3/13/99 +0800, ykChia wrote:
> <snip>
> >   By the way, I thought satellite watching is a recent ( last 10 years or
> so)
> >hobby. I got a surprise when I found reference to Satellite Observation in
> my 17th
> >edition of Norton's Star Atlas which I acquired in 1979!.

Hi yk!

I didn't get into serious satellite watching until just a couple of years ago.
When I got out of the service in 1960 I remember seeing Echo, it seemed to be a
big event with the Russians putting up Sputnik's. I think they had 3 up by then.
I don't recall ever seeing a Sputnik. I do remember feeling a little sad over
them having to put a man's best friend up knowing he wasn't going to make it
back. You gotta like Laika.

I also remember vividly in the middle sixties when my brother moved to a rural
area with almost no light pollution. Back then dark skies meant something. My
first few trips up to visit we'd take nightly walks on dirt roads away from his
house. I'll never forget the first one or two. He wanted me to see something.
We'd get so far and he'd say look. I'd say is it one of those satellite's? He'd
say just watch. Before you knew it, it was gone, just like that. I was

He'd say lets walk a little longer. Then we'd see another. And it was coming in
from a different direction. Well to make a long story short, he had me convinced
they were UFO's and he said he even seen them taking 45 degree turns. I never
did, but if I had, I think I would have run. I was experiencing a 3D mind game
and "Alien abductions" were getting in the news. I think that's what made
tabloids famous.

I didn't know then about earth shadow blink off or that we had things like rocket
bodies floating around glinting back at us, but I do remember Intelsat 1/Early
Bird and the fact France was getting into the act of launching objects into
space. I started serious satellite watching about 2 years ago after seeing Noss
2-3. So I guess I'm within the 10 year recent parameter your talking about. The
sad fact is I missed a lot of the excitement over the 30 to 35 years in between.