Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Early This Morning...

...3:30 AM, to be precise.

I happened across an article in USAToday that caught my attention. It was a brief look at the yearly sky spectacle known as the Geminids meteor shower. Apparently, the Perseids in August get all the attention, because, really, who doesn't like stargazing on a clear summer night? The Geminids have been a yearly occurrence for hundreds of years, according to an article I read. And the big difference that separates the Geminids from other the Perseids and the Leonids? The Geminids are debris falling from a passing asteroid.

Yep, a huge chunk of rock hurtling through space has been dropping debris on Earth for hundreds of years. Where is it picking up this debris? Or was it so big in the beginning that it still has the size to spare? I don't know.

What I do know is that the shower was spectacular. I told Chelsea that I was planning on driving south of Cedar City to watch the shower. She opted to go along. We drove out onto the road heading to Kanarraville, pulled off on a side road, parked along the side, then sat on the reclined shoulder to watch. It was a comfortable seat, except for the chill.

There were a lot of falling stars to watch. At least one a minute, judging by all the "oohs" and "ahhs" that we muttered.

I saw one that looked like a huge blue explosion in the sky. Another was a bright streak that lasted several seconds as it fell to the horizon. Even the streak of Milky Way was visible.

It was a good experience. I can't wait for next year.


JadeLuckMoney said...

New tradition, babe! I'm tellin' ya...next year's gonna be great, too :)

refugee from reason said...

That's a wonderful story. Thank you for sharing it. I'm not what one call an astronomy "buff," but I enjoy that science -- your description was well written...maybe one of these days we'll figure out a way to write together. I like your style, concision and candor.

RiaTheOne said...

Sweet. Geminids. I get it now! I actually watched these with someone when I was younger, but didn't know there was a name attached. Thanks!

Adam said...

Definitely a new tradition, Chelsea!

Refugee: Thank you. It would be fun to work on something with you. I've only collaborated on written projects a couple times, but I find it an invigorating challenge. Sparks creativity.

Hey, Maria. Glad this cleared things up for you a little. The Geminids put on a great show.