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The oh so late comet post

Updated: Aug 10, 2020

Recently we in the north were treated to a rare show. Comet Neowise was visible in the sky and could be seen even inside a city (provided you could find a place you could see the stars from). This picture was taken a few days before it faded from sight as it moved away from the sun. It won't be visible again for around 6766 years, so this was a truly unique experience.

I have enhanced a copy of this image to try to bring out the comet more. My monitor settings aren't calibrated perfectly, so hopefully it looks proper on everyone's screens.

The comet appeared in Ursa Major (in dashed lines with the big dipper in solid lines) right near the "front paws" of the bear. It didn't look like it would be clear the night this picture was taken, but due to some high winds, there was an extremely clear sky! There are also a few other cool objects visible in the image. There is Ursa Minor and Polaris, Cassiopeia, the Milky Way (that slight whitish glow that passes through Cassiopeia), and the Andromeda Galaxy (if you look close).

In the south side of the sky, Jupiter and Saturn were visible. If you can see them from where you live, keep an eye on these planets. They will move closer together as the year progresses and will get so close that they will look like one, even brighter, object in the sky in late December. This event is called a Great Conjunction and only happens roughly every 20 years. If you have good binoculars, or even better, a telescope of your own, you will be able to see both planets together along with some of their moons!

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Kris Fedick
Kris Fedick
Aug 22, 2020

It really was one hell of a sight! I have never seen a comet like that before. I saw one once that was just a bright point of light in the sky but, without a telescope, you couldn't see the tail. A very impressive sight but not the most impressive I have ever seen in the sky. I'll make a post about that once I have a chance to dig through my photo database for an image.


Ken Livitski
Ken Livitski
Aug 10, 2020

This is FANTASTIC, man! Great photos and a great description of what I'm looking at. That must've been a hell of sight! Thanks for sharing!

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