Bruce McClure

Aries? Here’s your constellation

How to see Aries the Ram in your night sky, plus info about this constellation in astronomy history and mythology.

Cold Moon and the peak of the Geminid meteor shower

Above: Photo of the December 2018 full moon by Larry Marr Your calendar might say that full moon comes on December 12, 2019. In fact, it falls on December 11, according to clocks in North America. This is the last full moon of 2019. For most places around the world, it’ll look round and full…read more »

All you need to know: This weekend’s Geminid meteor shower

The Geminid meteor shower – one of the highlights of the year for stargazers – will peak around the mornings of December 13 and 14, 2019, though under the light of a bright waning gibbous moon.

Conjunction of Venus and Saturn in evening sky.

See this week’s Venus-Saturn pairing

On December 10 and 11, 2019, look in the sunset direction – close to the sunset point on the horizon, not long after the sun goes down – for the the conjunction of 2 bright planets, Venus and Saturn. Some will also spot Jupiter nearby.

Mars and Zubenelgenubi before dawn December 10, 2019.

Mars-Zubenelgenubi conjunction December 12

This next week, before dawn, watch as the red planet Mars sweeps by the Zubenelgenubi, the constellation Libra’s alpha star.

Earliest sunsets for 40 degrees N. around now

Earliest sunsets for 30 degrees N. were centered on late November and early December. Earliest sunsets at mid-northern latitudes are happening now. S. Hemisphere? Watch for your earliest sunrises.

Orion’s Belt and the Celestial Bridge

To the Aymara – indigenous people in the Andes and Altiplano regions of South America – the famous sky feature we know as Orion’s Belt is seen as a Celestial Bridge between the sky’s Northern and Southern Hemispheres.

Orion the Hunter and the Milky Way

The constellation Orion is very easy to find. If you have a dark sky, you can also see the luminous band of the Milky Way running behind it.

Bird's-eye view of Earth and moon at first quarter moon

December 3-4 brings 2019’s farthest 1st quarter moon

Although the moon reached its farthest point from Earth for the year last February 5, the year’s farthest 1st quarter moon comes on December 3-4, 2019.

Pisces? Here’s your constellation

How to see the constellation Pisces and its alpha star, Al Risha, the star that ties the 2 Fishes together by their tails.