M38 is the northern-most
of a chain of three bright open clusters in Auriga. Each of
these clusters has its own unique identity. In the case of M38
we see a loose, irregular grouping of 10-11th magnitude stars
sprinkled over a failry rich field of fainter points of light.
Of M38 Web said, "Larger stars dot it prettily with open
doubles. Glorious neighborhood."
The field in a 6-inch at
50x. North is down and east is to the right.
Don't miss the nearby
open cluster NGC 1907. This cluster is much fainter and
smaller, offering a nice study in contrast. The integrated
visual magnitude of NGC 1907 is 10.2, and it subtends a much smaller
6'. In contrast to their appearance, these two clusters are
about the same age and distance. NGC 1907 is a bit more
heavily obscured by intervening dust.