Where to Catch Tonight's Geminid Meteor Shower
Wikimedia Commons: Geminids
If you can find an excuse to be outside tonight/early tomorrow morning, look up.
Tonight will be the peak of the Geminid meteor shower, an annual event that occurs in mid-December.
Meteor shower experts predict it will be the best meteor shower of the year, and depending on visibility, viewers might be able to catch a glimpse of more than 100 colorful meteors per hour.
So when, where and how's the best place to catch 'em? Check out our hints after the jump ...
1. Get away from city lights. It might take a drive, but there are a few Valley spots that are fairly dark and not too far away. While state parks and mountain reserves are closed during prime meteor shower hours, a quick drive to the end of Pecos Road in the southwest Valley, a bike ride down to Tempe "Beach" Park, or a trek up to a northern location might be your best options. Check out a few of the Saguaro Astronomy Club's recommendations of more remote stargazing sites here.
2. Look toward the Gemini constellation (that's northeast) between 3 and 4 a.m., when the shower's expected to peak. Note: Geminid experts still expect there to be a good show from sunset Monday to sunrise Tuesday. If constellations and directionals are Greek to you, here's a helpful map from Space.com.
3. Or skip the potential goose chase and check out a live, online show and chat with Geminid experts at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center.
4. Grab a blanket.
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