Get ready to spot some shooting stars! The Geminids meteor shower, known as one of the best of the year, is happening this December and it’ll be especially visible in Canada.
NASA says that the Geminids meteor shower is “one of the best and most reliable annual meteor showers” of the year.
It is active throughout the month and peaks in mid-December, specifically on December 14th and 15th.
According to EarthSky, the Geminids favours the Northern Hemisphere, so we’ll be treated to some of the best views of this annual display here in Canada.
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This shower will be “bold, white and quick,” EarthSky says. The radiant point is at around 2 a.m., which is when the Gemini constellation will be at its highest point in the sky, making it the optimal time to see the Geminids. The higher the constellation climbs, the better the show will be.
The Geminids are known for having more meteors per hour than most others throughout the year, with an astounding 120 meteors per hour during its peak, according to NASA.
There are a few ways you can ensure that you get the best possible view of the meteor shower.
The most important things are time and place — dark, open areas at 2 a.m. or later, says EarthSky.
Once you’re settled into your star-gazing spot, you’ll want to stay for at least an hour to give your eyes a chance to fully adjust to the darkness.
No special equipment is needed, just warm clothing and a comfortable spot to lay down. The meteors will be visible in all areas of the sky.
If you don’t want to stay up late, you could try to spot the rare “earthgrazer” meteor in the early evenings, with the Gemini sitting close to the horizon.
The earthgrazer is described as a slow, long-lasting meteor that moves horizontally. Though rarely seen, it’s definitely still possible to catch a glimpse.