Rockford Will Get A Look At The Lyrid Meteor Showers
It's been going on since last Friday, April 16th, but our best chance at getting a decent look at the Lyrid Meteor Showers in the Rockford area should be this Thursday in the early morning hours.
There might be a slight problem with the moon, though. Wikipedia explains it this way:
The shower usually peaks around April 22 and the morning of April 23. Counts typically range from 5 to 20 meteors per hour, averaging around 10. As a result of light pollution, observers in rural areas will see more than observers in a city, and nights without the Moon in the sky will reveal the most meteors.
Yeah, about that "without the moon in the sky thing." Unfortunately, there will also be a bright waxing gibbous Moon in the sky during the peak viewing time for the Lyrids. If the moon is too bright, it tamps down the relative brightness of the meteors streaking across the night sky. I almost didn't bother bringing this up to you when I initially read about the Moon's potential interference to your viewing.
I say almost, because I happened upon a work-around to the Moon's brightness. Space.com suggests that you try getting outside to take a look a bit later (or earlier depending on how you look at it):
However, here's a bit of good news: the moon will set at around 4 a.m., just when Vega is soaring high in the sky. So, for about a half hour, until about 4:30 a.m., the skies will be dark and you'll be able to watch the Lyrids under the best possible conditions. Then, the skies will begin to brighten with the approach of sunrise soon after 6 a.m.
That's perfect! You'll probably be getting up anyway, just so you can catch the start of the WROK Morning Show at exactly 5:00am. Just head outside for a few minutes and enjoy the Lyrid Meteor Showers before coming back in and turning up that radio.
Here are some details on the experience: