The night sky in August will be serving up some exciting sights!
Aside from the eclipse on the 21st, astronomers say the Perseid meteor shower – an annual event which takes place each August – will be the brightest in recorded human history. I haven’t been able to find any information explaining why this shower, which is always pretty spectacular, is going to be especially bright in 2017. I also know that, since the moon will be much closer to full than new (meaning it’ll be bright), it will have an impact on how many showers we’ll be able to see. Still, I’ll take the word of the experts and plan to find some nice dark skies over Grand Teton National Park from which to view/photograph the show. The peak of shower activity will be August 12th.
The Perseid shower will be visible from anywhere in the Northern Hemisphere. Make sure you head away from city lights if you’re planning on viewing them. Also, plan to spend some time viewing the sky. The more your eyes become acclimated to the darkness, the more meteor showers you’ll see.
As for the eclipse, I’m fortunate enough to live in the path of totality. An added bonus is the fact that the August skies over Idaho tend to be clear. Rain generally isn’t an issue – though haze from forest fires could be. A lot of people – from all over the world – are headed to this part of the country to watch the spectacle overhead.