In the video clip above, Meteorologist Christine Gregory talks the current ongoing weather as of around 5 PM Friday evening and what to expect when looking up.
Calling all students, teachers, and sky gazers alike! This evening you may have the chance to see the close encounter between our nearly full, harvest moon and a fiery, red planet mars as they appear to graze each other in the night sky offering quite the show!
There’s only one catch: the weather may or may not want to cooperate for EVERYONE to be able to see this splendor in the sky. Even though this event shouldn’t be a complete bust, those who are able to see it will heavily depend on the placement of anticipated lake effect rain showers and pesky clouds lingering around this evening.
For those that do get a chance to see this, here’s an idea of what it would look like:
Looking towards the eastern sky and peeking through the clouds should reveal the bright moon with a partner by its side. Yes, that little red dot next to the moon will be our 4th planet from the sun, mars! When glancing at this unique appearance from the two astronomical features, they will appear to be just grazing one another in the night sky.
SUNSET TONIGHT: 6:49 PM EDT
PRIME VIEWING: Around nightfall, just after sunset into the early evening
It will be a battle between an exiting area of low pressure and an incoming area of high pressure moving in overnight. High pressure from the west will try its best to dry things out just a bit as we head into Saturday, but our slow moving trough producing scattered showers throughout the region ahead of this, courtesy of some instability and lift from our Great Lakes, may end up ruling out overall. The main struggle will be the pesky clouds and showers that look likely to block the view for some, however, perhaps not for all…
Per the current forecast it does look likely that we’ll still have a few scattered showers around this evening, but the key word here is scattered. This means that a good chunk of you will also be dry for the time being in between these showers with clearing skies to match.
All in all, it’s possible that breaks in the clouds will allow the view to clear just enough to get a glimpse of the show that is the moon and planet mars just appearing to touch. Check out the two different model outputs just after the sun sets this evening. They both show the similar idea that there will be a mix of some clouds, some rain drops, and even some brief areas of clearing. It just won’t be at the exact same time all across the region.
Courtesy of the SRPD/RDPS Canadian Total Cloud model below, the majority of the region looks likely be covered with decent cloud cover, but there are still spots with possible clearing just as the sun sets tonight.
The beauty of lake effect is that in one spot, it’s cloudy and rainy, and just a mile or two north it could be clear as day. Despite the situation, it still seems like decent odds that some of you could manage to see this uncommon sight this evening.
We will continue to update this page throughout this afternoon and early evening as new forecast information comes in.
TRACK the rain with our interactive radar HERE
Other fun headlines to watch for this month:
- Mars will be closest to earth on October 6th
- Mars reaches opposition October 13th
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~Meteorologist Christine Gregory