July 2024

Most of the planet watching this month is from midnight to dawn. Saturn rises in the late evening and appears stationary next to Aquarius. It’s actually retrograde, but since it just began that motion at the end of June, it takes a few weeks into July to notice with casual naked eye observations. Even then, […]

June 2024

Evening planet watching doesn’t have much to offer this month. The planets are mostly lined up in the morning at the start of June. It starts with Saturn rising a little after local midnight in Aquarius. Mars is next in the wee hours in Pisces. Next are Uranus, Mercury, and Jupiter in Taurus rising closer […]

May 2024

The moon’s at last quarter on the first day of May. It’ll rise around local midnight in Capricornus. A thinning crescent will be near Saturn in the morning sky on the 4th. Then it’s by Mars on the 5th, the same day the moon crosses the equator going north and is at perigee at 363,100 […]

April 2024

The big event this month is the total solar eclipse. The path of totality begins in the Pacific Ocean. It reaches Isla Socorro and keeps going to mainland Mexico. After is crosses Mexico, it goes across part of the United States from Texas to the Great Lakes, goes into southeastern Canada, and the United States […]

March 2024

Jupiter is high up in the west in the evening as darkness begins this month. Uranus is nearby and you’ll probably need binoculars or a telescope to see it. Both are moving prograde or eastward. Jupiter is faster. A growing crescent moon visits on the 13th. Jupiter is catching up to Uranus and there will […]

February 2024

Mercury, Mars, and Venus are leaving the morning sky. Mercury is at the bottom of the heap and already impossible to see from much of the world as February begins. The view’s good though from 15° to 25° south. Even from there, Mercury heads into the sunrise glow by mid-month. By that time, Venus has […]

January 2024

We start a new year with Saturn setting in the evening, Jupiter and Uranus setting around midnight, and three other planets rising in the dawn. You can watch Saturn setting earlier each evening this month, even though it’s moving eastward among the stars of Aquarius. It slowly approaches Sigma Aquarii for a close call at […]

December 2023

A past-full moon is in the late evening and morning skies in Gemini when December begins. Apogee is on the 4th at 404,400 km distance. The moon will pass by Regulus in Leo that day. Last quarter is the next day with the moon below the lion. The moon passes near Zavijava in Virgo on […]

November 2023

This month starts with a waning gibbous moon approaching lunistice. The moon will be 28.3° north on the 2nd. See it from late evening until it sets in the daytime. Jupiter’s at opposition on the 3rd at slightly less than four astronomical units from us. The early part of this month is a great time […]

October 2023

As October begins, Mars is disappearing from the evening sky. If you’re looking from about 15 to 20 degrees south of the equator, you’re getting the best view, with the planet setting around an hour after the sun and almost directly above it. You may be able to see Mars passing by Spica on Monday […]