Perseid Meteor Shower

August 11th, 2012 at 1:44 pm by under Bill's Blog, Weather

   The Perseid Meteor Shower peaks this morning and Sunday night and we’ve already had some great reports.  If you see a bright meteor (fireball), you can log a report at the website of the American Meteor Society.    Here’s a satellite loop (IR loop so you can see both day and night).  It’s clear from Kent Co. west as I type this around 1 AM.  The clearing line will very slowly progress to the east overnight.    The Perseids, usually the best meteor shower of the year, are the debris from the comet Swift-Tuttle.   See the short video here and the first part of this short videoObservers have been seeing up to 75 meteors an hour (you won’t see that many, but it’ll still be pretty good).  Here’s some images of meteors taken from around the world.  Live meteor data here and you can actually here meteors here.   While you could see a meteor (sometimes called a “shooting star”) anywhere in the sky, the best place to look is toward the constellation Perseus in the high northeast sky.  You could see a meteor anytime after it gets dark, but the best time will be late tonight, between 2 AM and dawn.  This evening, the Veen Observatory (pictured here) will be open for sky viewing from 9 PM to 11:30 PM.  The giant telescopes will feature deep sky objects such as galaxies, star clusters and nebulas.  The Observatory is on Kissing Rock Road.  Here’s a map showing the location of the Observatory.  The Grand Rapids Amateur Astronomical Association is also hosting a Perseid Meteor Watch at the Cascade Township Park from 11.30pm – 5.00am.  Here’s directions to the park.  Hundreds of people are expected, so it should be quite a party!  Only the naked eye is required to view meteors, and members of the Astronomical Association will be on hand to explain what is going on and where to look for them. They will also provide several telescopes for viewing of Jupiter and the crescent moon during predawn hours.  Bring a blanket or chairs, a jacket (it’ll be down around 60 degrees) and some snacks.  There is a nominal charge for the Veen Observatory to maintain the building and telescopes.  The Perseid Meteor Watch is free.  The Kalamazoo Astronomical Society is also holding a Perseid Meteor Watch at the Kalamazoo Nature Center starting at 8:30 PM.  Here’s directions to the Nature Center.  If you know of any other Perseid Watches tonight, please leave a comment and let us know about it.   You can also see a grouping of the crescent moon, Venus, Jupiter and the reddish star Aldebaran (a giant sun with a diameter more than 44 times the diameter of our sun) in the early morning sky.  Here’s a picture of the star/moon groupings in the morning and evening sky. Here’s this week’s flyovers of the International Space Station.  Finally, check out this picture of the Northern Lights and noctilucent clouds (in the distance) from up by Hudson Bay.

72 Responses to “Perseid Meteor Shower”

  1. Mr. Negative says:

    Ada – Heavy, dark clouds taking over…day number three for rain?

    1. fixxxer says:

      Hope not.

    2. dave evans jr says:

      saw 6 last night in silver lake

  2. Scott, Home in Lawrence (Van Buren Co ) says:

    Not a cloud in the sky should be great viewing tonight

  3. Swatz_Zoo(Cedar Springs) says:

    Clouds, clouds, thick dark clouds here so unless they move out by late tonight we won’t see a thing tonight or tomorrow. Hoping they clear out for the viewing.

    1. fixxxer says:

      Sure is a slow moving low pressure system. You can thank it for the clouds and cooler temps.

  4. Barry in Zeeland says:

    Clear here and should be great viewing tonight! We have a get together every year at this time just for the meteors, and of course my birthday which is on the 12th. It’s like a birthday present every year in the sky. Hoping for some food earth grazers tonight!!

    1. Barry in Zeeland says:

      oops….”good earth grazers”, but there will be a lot of “food” as well.

  5. INDY says:

    From out at thee YARDofBRICKS this fire is for u tonight Bill… INDYY!!

  6. karen R says:

    hi does anyone know if theres a place on sunday people can go to watch? thank you

    1. Bill Steffen says:

      Haven’t heard anything about Sunday.

      1. Donald Steffen says:

        fell asleep before it got dark…. god I am getting old :)

    2. Jerry hoag says:

      Not sure of any places you could go to. But where I live I have been az blr to, so far, see 6 of them tonite. Cant wait to see what tomorroe brings.

  7. Jack Martin - Fennville, Michigan says:

    Thank You Bill, This looks to be a great evening for some ” Star and Moon” gazing here. Great links. I will be looking at the skies into the Morning.

  8. Swatz_Zoo(Cedar Springs) says:

    I’m bummed clouds have thickened more so up here :-( Oh well hopefully tomorrow night will be better viewing since it’s SUPPOSE to be nicer tomorrow then today.

    1. Bruiseviolet says:

      still awhile for them to clear out =) I’m hoping they do-

  9. bluegill says:

    Last year the day after ‘the peak’ my sons and I counted 118 between 10:30pm and 11:30pm. The night after that 17. The night of the peak was only a few.

  10. jen says:

    Thick clouds in middleville.:-( still about 5 hours to clear out though….

  11. fixxxer says:

    Really eerie right now. No birds, crickets or any noise outside lol.

    1. Swatz_Zoo(Cedar Springs) says:

      It is eerie out, very still. My flock rather you believe in it or not have been HORRIBLY, HORRIBLY skittish and on edge screaming, swquaking, honking, running at the slightest thing, something has them on edge in a bad, bad way and this is unlike them. I think maybe they are sensing something brewing, who knows.

    2. Jerry hoag says:

      It is because I ate them all for dinner……

  12. michael g (SE GR) says:

    Here you go fix. Cold El Nino winter on the way!

    https://twitter.com/BigJoeBastardi/status/234424873366204418/photo/1

    1. fixxxer says:

      Whatever floats your boat. I cant believe you still listen to that guy.

      1. michael g (SE GR) says:

        At least I name my sources, rather than making vague statements about what “I’ve been hearing.”

  13. Bev says:

    on the shores of Lk Michigan …. we are setting our clocks …it looks very promising cloud wise

  14. Jack says:

    IMHO … Sky’s Should Be Clear Enough In Grand Rapids…… For our Viewing Pleasure…. :-)

    1. Swatz_Zoo(Cedar Springs) says:

      *SIGH* I won’t stay up waiting for clouds to leave because they aren’t very dark and heavy looking like they are about ready to let loose, I had to go on radar to see if storms were coming but nothing.

  15. Jordan (Twin Lake) says:

    Looks as if we are expecting more much needed rain on Monday and Thursday I see a pattern change in the forecast :) anybody else see it?

    1. Nathan (Forest Hills) says:

      Yup, and it’s a good one too! I’m aiming at a cold September too!

      1. Swatz_Zoo(Cedar Springs) says:

        I thought every day there was a chance of rain, looks like I’ll be rain proofing my duck pens better this last bought of rain wasn’t so rain proof, all the hard work my son and I did cleaning duck/geese pens and laying fresh bedding down was a lost cause the next 2 days from things leaking and running into it. *SIGH* Oh well, looks like clouds are tryin to clear I can see the big dipper clearly then just off to the east of it, CLOUDS which would be NE where the stars would get actives so hopefully but not counting on it.

  16. Bobbi says:

    Where in Walker can you view them? Im close to meijer and cannot see anything :-(

    1. Bill Steffen says:

      The lights of the town may be dimming the show for you. One year I drove up by Kent City and the viewing was much better.

    2. Jack says:

      Darn Light Pollution.

  17. INDY says:

    Well one good thought it’s past fizzer’s bed time now we can talk weather on theee Bill’s blogg INDYYYY…

    1. Swatz_Zoo(Cedar Springs) says:

      How do storms look in the future Indy??? Rain was nice but it would have been more entertaining if there was thunder booms and lighting zooms

  18. My Clouds are THICKER THAN THICK !!!!!!

  19. Andy Losik says:

    Beautiful night to lie on a blanket and watch the show here in Fennville. Best night of the summer.

    I even caught one on camera. http://www.flickr.com/photos/chargerblue/7763117506/in/set-72157631025885020/

  20. Matt says:

    in battle creek near Harper Creek High School…clouds are just moving out and the meteors are active already! I just saw a huge streak across the sky I cant wait for peak time to get here…anyone else out looking yet?

    1. SS (Pwell Area) says:

      What time should they peak?!?!

      1. Matt says:

        between 2am and dawn…look to the east. they have been right over my head for the most part right now

        1. SS (Pwell Area) says:

          Thank You!!! Will be checking them out!!! Set the alarm for a little later…LOL!!!

        2. SS (Pwell Area) says:

          NASA has a live chat right now with some expert and even a live stream as well!!!

  21. SlimJim NW GR (1) says:

    On my way home tonight I happened to see a very bright meteor streak thru the clouds.
    SlimJim

  22. Josh says:

    Seen a bright light in the sky near Coopersville.

  23. Josh says:

    It wasnt blinking either and was large.

  24. Kim says:

    Great views of the meteor shower from my driveway in Belmont.

  25. Jack says:

    Went out Back at the apts. Of Jack , and Instanly 1.. Waited for more …Neck got tired…Back out We Goooooooo….For more… :-)

  26. Karen Mc says:

    I’ve been watching for over an hour now. I have seen quite a few…some leaving vivid long trails…you need to be patient….but they are out there.
    Sometimes there are three or four in a row. Amazing sight. Hope to see the peak … had to come in to get a warmer jacket. Going back out. Don’t want to miss any.

  27. Going to BED !!! STILL LOCKED IN CLOUDS, not even a breeze to blow the clouds out. With all the low level moisture,set my alarm for later.

  28. Jan says:

    We spent about 90 minutes watching this morning and have seen about 25-30 meteors. After many years of trying, I have finally seen a meteor (and many more after that)! Yippeee!

  29. bodawg says:

    I did some sky watching near Holland State Park. I Counted 20 ‘good ones’ between 12:40-1:20. There were about 40 in all. I saw all of them falling from east to west. I waited for them to splash into the lake, but I never heard it.

  30. Katie in Kentwood says:

    Beautiful meteor shower! Saw some bright ones up in Petoskey and drove home, saw some on the way home and at the Big Rapids rest area….then the Grand Rapids light pollution drowned them out :(

  31. Greg says:

    South of Ionia is getting a pretty nice show. No city lights and big open and beautiful sky. Only saw a few, but they were very nice. It shows how grand the universe is and how small you really are.

  32. SS (Pwell Area) says:

    Watching them now!!!

  33. Jerry hoag says:

    I’ve seen 6 of them tonite, meteor shower, that is. Will stay up late again tomorrow to see more

  34. Brian(Grandville) says:

    Looks like a lot of clouds of to the west heading right this way. Hope they clear out by tonight.

  35. Kevin S (Saugatuck) says:

    Three of us watched from the fennville area. In an hour and twenty min, we counted 103. Amazing site….

  36. North side of holland says:

    Could some one plz tell me when would be the best viewing time tonight (Sunday) ,my boys and I watched the meteors last night and the kids kept on ooohhhing and aaahhhhing at the shooting stars :)

    1. Jack says:

      After 10pm Local…. Best Time is Midnight till Dawn…Providing You Don’t Have A lot of CLOUDS…. ENJOY….ooooohhh AHHHHHHH… :-)

  37. SS (Pwell Area) says:

    We watched as well… saw some pretty amazing ones!!! If one nite is better than the other.

  38. Bonna Berte says:

    What time On
    Sunday would be the best time for viewing. I am over in Ionia county.

    1. Bill Steffen says:

      Wish I had better news…but it’s going to be pretty overcast tonight, especially after 2 AM when the meteors will be at their best.

      1. Jack says:

        Hello Bill, Quick Question …. Does The Visibility Of The Meteor Shower..Last until AUG. 15. ????

        1. Bill Steffen says:

          The meteor shower peaked Saturday and Sunday nights. The number of meteors falls off gradually as you get farther away from the peak, but there will be a few on the 15th and a very few into next week.

        2. Jack says:

          Thank – You… Sir, Bill

  39. shan says:

    watched on and off last night in GR 215 am ~ 230 am saw 5
    238am ~ 319am saw 14
    and around 4am I took a last look and it look like the moon falling out of the sky! it was like a huge fireball. So cool!!

  40. Tom Rush says:

    I was outside from about 2-2:30am and saw one meteor, one deer eating flowers in my next door neighbor’s yard, and one police car chase. 2 GR cruisers with sirens and lights flashing were in pursuit of another car. All in all it made for a pretty interesting half hour of sky watching.

  41. Swatz_Zoo(Cedar Springs) says:

    So much for viewing anything tonight heavy clouds up here I thought with the sun shining earlier we were in the clear, obviously not.

  42. Josh says:

    Anyone going out tonight to see if there’s anything left of the meteor shower from last night?

  43. North side of holland says:

    Boo! Cloud cover!

    1. Jack says:

      I don’t Think It’s Gonna Clear Up, For Us Tonight, BUT Ya Never Know…. Peace…God Bless… :-)

  44. Grace says:

    I saw two on the way back from Kalkaska at about 12 am last Saturday (Aug 11th). Then one this Saturday (Aug.18th) at 10 pm in the northeastern sky of Big Rapids. It had a green trail behind it. It was awesome. :)

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