Did You Catch the Leonid Meteor Shower?

Were you able to catch a glimpse in Laguna Niguel at midnight Friday? Send us photos or videos.

Skywatching was supposed to be at its most exciting this weekend when the famous Leonid meteor shower was expected to peak late Friday night in Laguna Niguel through early Saturday. 

Did you catch a glimpse? Take any photos? Video? 

Once again, as in the past, the meteor shower was hard to see from here, but in the future, you can get to a dark area with some elevation, perhaps the area up around the top of Pacific Island Dr. Once up there, you might be able to see a few meteors, Laguna Niguel resident, Richard Bent, who spent more than 20 years working on satellites and rockets for the aerospace industry has suggested.

The area Bent mentions is one of the premier summits in Laguna Niguel. It is located at the "view point," which is just off Pacific Island Drive on Talavera Drive.

A for the recent Leonid, these meteors are fast (about 40 miles per second) and can leave trails of smoke, according to Astronomy.com. They will appear to radiate from the constellation Leo the Lion and can vary in color.

"Many Leonids are also bright. Usually, the meteors are white or bluish-white, but in recent years some observers reported yellow-pink and copper-colored ones," according to Astronomy.com

Space.com has a number of tips for watching the Leonids. The site also has some spectacular Leonids photos. And here's a Youtube video of the Leonid meteor shower.

Check out these stories,  which wowed gazers in August. Or, who can forget the Venus Transit?

More tidbits about the Leonid shower:

  • One of the 10 cool things to know about the Leonids, from Space.com: "Leonids are spawned by the comet Tempel-Tuttle. Every 33 years, it rounds the Sun and then goes back to the outer solar system. On each passage across Earth's orbit, Tempel-Tuttle lays down another trail of debris..."
  • This shower is called the Leonid shower because the meteors seem to come from a point in the constellation Leo. But they are really much closer to Earth than these stars are. The starting point, called the radiant, is found in the part of Leo that looks to be a backwards question mark. 
  • The Leonids has been called, some years, a "meteor storm" (rather than just a "shower"), but reports say this year will be limited to "at best 10 to 15 meteors per hour." The last Leonid storm, with thousands of shooting stars per hour, was in 2002.
  • Fireballs may be seen with the naked eye.
Charles November 17, 2012 at 02:54 AM
We don't need to know when it is going to rain or be cloudy. All we have to do is check when the next eclipse or meteor shower is expected.
Frieda Wales November 17, 2012 at 09:14 AM
It's raining.


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