Stargazing in the Northwoods

One of the great things about the Northwoods is the low levels of light pollution. What does that mean for you? Spectacular Stargazing!

On the clear nights in Eagle River, you are able to not only see the Milky Way but also satellites, shooting stars and even the International Space Station. Plus, when the timing is right you can even get a view of SpaceX’s Starlink Satellites. 

To find out exactly when a Starlink train will be visible from your precise location, visit the Find Starlink website (or the “Find Starlink Satellites” app) and just enter your location. (hint hint: Eagle River’s Last Resort is at Latitude: 45.9457556 and Longitude: -89.2182783

Starlink Train

Satellites are neat to spot because they look like a moving star but be careful it may just be an airplane you spot. Usually you can tell it is an airplane because there is a blinking light associated with it.

To locate different constellations or identify planets, we use a stargazing app – skyview lite. There are many more but this is the one I’m familiar with. This app will show you where the planets are located and what constellations are visible in the night sky. Great learning activity for the kids… or heck I’m 31 and still enjoy it. 

Depending upon when you arrive for your summer vacation in Northern Wisconsin, you may see these events:

July 28, 2020: Delta Aquariids: At the shower’s peak on or near July 28, 2020, the rather faint Delta Aquariid meteors will be best seen in the predawn hours, after the moon has set. 

August 12, 2020: Perseid Meteor Shower: The Perseids are the “Old Faithful” of meteor showers. Peak activity is expected early morning of August 12th. You will still be able to see shooting stars a few mornings after as well.

October 8, 2020: Draconids: The Draconids are best viewed from the Northern Hemisphere. The Draconid shower is a real oddity, in that the radiant point stands highest in the sky as darkness falls. That means that, unlike many meteor showers, more Draconids are likely to fly in the evening hours than in the morning hours after midnight.

Armed with your apps and this information – Come on down to the beach, lay back on one of our lounge chairs, bring a blanket and a mug of hot cider or hot cocoa (with possibly a splash of something something) and get to gazing.  Who knows maybe you’ll get lucky and see Uranus. 😉

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