How To Maximize Your Meteor Shower Viewing Tonight!


The annual Geminid meteor shower is expected to peak tonight, Dec. 13, 2017, into the early morning hours of Dec. 14.

It should be a good show — the Geminids are annually one of the most prolific among their meteor counterparts, and the moon, already a waning crescent, won't even rise until about 3:30 Thursday morning, so its light won't make it harder to see meteors.

Last year, the extra brightness of a supermoon spoiled the Geminids.

Here's what you need to know about the 2017 Geminid meteor shower:

When to look

You can looking any time after dark, though you're not likely to see one until about 9 p.m. The best time to look is between 1 and 2 a.m., when the shower is expected to peak.

Where in the sky

The meteors can appear anywhere in the sky, but looking toward the south might give you your best chance.

Where to watch

You can watch a meteor shower from anywhere, but it's always better the darker it is. A city center with lots of artificial light is the worst place to watch a meteor show, though you still can see them. A dark field in the country or an isolated, unlit beach are examples of the best places.

How many shooting stars will there be?

There could be as many as 120 meteors per hour at the Geminids' peak. So if you give yourself a good 10-15 minutes to adjust your eyes and then just another 15-20 minutes, you potentially could see 40 to 50 meteors in about a half-hour. 

Potential is the key here -- you really need just the right conditions to maximize your meteor count.


Scotty Mac

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