Almost totally dry

So, I went out Monday night/Tuesday morning to try and catch something for the Lyrids meteor shower that we are currently undergoing. For once, we had ideal conditions, or as ideal as I can possibly achieve in this location: no moon, clear skies, and I traveled down to Jordan Lake to get the darkest skies possible within, oh, thirty kilometers or so (which isn’t all that dark, read more

Yeah, nah

Earlier this evening but on a previous day, I was doing a bit of blog maintenance and checked the post count so far this year: 166 (not counting this one of course.) That not only beats out last year’s count already, by four posts, but places this year fourth out of eleven years so far, with six weeks to go. Am I gonna set a new record? Not likely, because that’s held read more

From the lair of the Lion came the Fire

Boy, a couple of capital letters makes everything dramatic, doesn’t it? But all I’m referring to is the Leonids meteor shower, which should be peaking tomorrow night or thereabouts.

I have reminders set up on my calendar for about a week in advance, because you can start seeing activity well before a peak, and the Leonids has, at times, been a pretty damn good shower. And I’ve had read more

One word

Orionids

That doesn’t really cut it though, does it? Even if you know what the Orionids are, I didn’t say when they’d be occurring, and if you did know, you probably wouldn’t need me to tell you when, or even that they are occurring. I was just trying to, you know, counteract my tendency to write too damn much when only a few words would do, or go read more

Stormy season

Just a quick note, but there’s another meteor shower peaking soon, this time the Perseids, supposed to reach maximum on the nights of the 12th and 13th. I tell you this mostly to point out that, yet again, the moon is going to be too bright to make much of them, being damn near full those nights. I’m going to have to sit down and calculate how often either a) the moon has been too bright, read more

Oh, give it a shot

It’s been a while since I’ve made the attempt myself, but the moon conditions at least are almost ideal now. Over the next few nights we’ll be near-peak for two different meteor showers: the Delta Aquarids and the Alpha Capricornids. All too often, the moon is too bright for good viewing, throwing excessive light across the sky (especially in humid climes like read more

You can be looking up for things, but things aren’t looking up

Say, what’s the night sky been like recently where you are? What? You say the moon is nearly full? Wow, here too! What are the chances?

But of course, with a bright moon in the sky, it must be time for another meteor shower, or in this case, two back-to-back – well, technically overlapping: the Southern Delta Aquariids and the Alpha Capricornids. Actually both have been read more

They’re coming… maybe

I suddenly realized that the term, “meteorology,” with its inherent inaccuracies, must have come from the predictions for meteor showers, since only once has the claim of a “good storm” come true in my experience. An awful lot of times, when I’ve gone out specifically to view one during peak times, I’ve seen nothing.

With that pessimistic opening, I can say that read more

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