Clouds Hamper Bitterroot View of Geminid Meteor Shower
The annual Geminid meteor shower has been building to a peak this week in the skies above Earth.
The second most popular meteor shower each year (the other is the Perseids meteor shower in the late summer) has been reported to be fairly active with about one visible meteor each minute - if you're looking at the right part of the sky.
However, the weather in the Bitterroot Valley and Western Montana has pretty much eliminated any views of the "falling stars" this year. There could be a few opportunities during late Thursday night into Friday morning, December 15, but the NOAA satellites show lots of clouds coming our way.
A positive note, though. The meteor shower is composed of material left behind by asteroid 3200 Phaeton, which is passing Earth this month a bit closer than usual. Some astronomers are expecting that pass-by to affect next year's Geminid meteor show. Maybe a few more in the sky?
If you're somewhere early Friday morning where the clouds have parted, take a look up and you might see a meteor or two.
Of course, in a few days, you'll be looking up to see that reindeer-powered UFO. Ho, ho, ho!