Typically, the Perseids meteor shower is the best one every year. Each August, skywatchers are treated to 60 or more meteors per hour. This year will be a bit different thanks to Sunday’s supermoon.
Skywatchers will have to deal with brightness from the still nearly full moon. But, those with some patience and willing to stay up late will be able to catch a few shooting stars. The Perseids meteor shower will peak in the late night-time and early morning hours of Tuesday and Wednesday.
A few hours before dawn Wednesday will be the best chance to check out the meteor shower. By then, the moon will be low in the sky. It won’t be perfect viewing conditions, but the brightest shooting stars will be easily visible.
Find a nice clear spot away from city lights to take in this week’s Perseids meteor shower. Grab a blanket, lie flat on your back and give your eyes about 30 minutes to adjust to the darkness.
Besides the supermoon, weather is going to make spotting the Perseids difficult for many across the U.S. Rain and thunderstorms will make spotting the Perseids nearly impossible for those of you living on the east coast. Arizona and New Mexico will also have to contend with storms on Monday and Tuesday night.
The best spots for viewing the Perseids will be in the midwest stretching towards the southeast and California.
I’ll leave you with this bonus picture from 2011 showing a Perseid meteor hitting the atmosphere taken aboard the International Space Station.