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Where to Catch Tonight's Geminid Meteor Shower

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 ...

Quick Tips:

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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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