I got up before 3 a.m. today and headed northwest of the city with my friend David Bert. Our mission: see shooting stars. A lot of them.
We did see some spectacular meteors streaking across the Milky Way-filled sky, just not a lot of them. I’m guessing we saw about 25 meteors in the 90 minutes of prime viewing time we had, but the trip was worth the sensory overload. We set up our chairs on a paved turnout about 10 miles up the Lee Canyon road. It was roughly 6,500 feet above sea level, which meant temperatures in the low 50s at 4 a.m.
The sky show included a bright planet (we’re pretty sure it was Jupiter), a few satellites moving quickly from west to east, an occasional airplane and a Colorform-like sunrise. The only camera I had was on my iPhone 4, so taking shots of the meteors was out of the question, but I did capture a nice shot of the sunrise.
Click photo for large image
Follow the Perseids on Twitter: http://twitter.com/#search?q=perseid
I also found a time-lapse video from Japan showing some of the meteors painting the night sky:
Tonight is your last chance to see the Perseids. The tail end of the show should make it easy to spot meteors in the northeast sky. Look after midnight through predawn.