Oct 22

Orionid meteor shower

Despite the winds during the day yesterday, last night was pretty clear for star gazing.  With the peak of the Orionid meteor shower due, it was with some excitement that we went outside after midnight to watch.

Jupiter was twinkling away wonderfully, while Sirius was also a nice sight.  With the moon just setting behind clouds and the horizon on the other side of the sky, it was shaping up to be decent observing.

And within five minutes of stepping outside, the first long tailed meteor streaked across the sky.  Normally I’m flicking my head around to Avalon’s call of ‘wow’ as the observing Gods generally don’t appear to favour the direction I happen to be looking in.  However this time round I got a good view.

A long tail, head peaking to brightness as it broke up in the atmosphere.   All clear and lovely to see.

Unfortunately that was it.  After another half hour, there wasn’t another meteor in sight.  Setting an alarm for a couple of hours later, and the sky was cloud covered.  So not a jot to see there.

Which got me wondering, if a meteor shower is somewhere between 20 and 60 sights a minute, then is one sighting in about an hour a drip?

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  1. Sophie

    I saw a meteor shower one night in Nov 2001 that beat anything else hands down. We were on boat off the Great Barrier Reef and the skipper had laughingly suggested that anyone mad enough they could wake up in the wee hours to watch. Never let it be said that i am not mad enough!

    It was so amazingly beautiful. Most of the time my attempts at stargazing are wrecked by cloud or light pollution, and neither was a issue that night. But true to form, come the morning my fellow backpackers agreed that i was indeed mad :p

  2. Avalon

    Lol – what do they say about Mad Dogs and Englishmen???

    Apparently it needs an update :D

    I actually got to see what (with my in-expert astronomy knowledge) I am going to call a “Short Tailed Meteor-ite” – but hubby was as usual looking in the wrong place lol.

    I guess we just got lucky moving to a particularly good spot for stargazing :)


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