Where to Watch the Perseids in the Adirondacks

Milky Way and meteor over Moss Lake. Photograph by Mark Bowie

Late summer’s celestial bonanza arrives in the Adirondacks in mid-August, with the annual Perseid meteor shower. From August 10-13 bright objects streak across the sky, often one a minute. The new moon doesn’t interfere with the display, which is best after midnight.

Though the meteors radiate from the constellation Perseus, the whole sky blazes with white, shining bursts and trails. Watching from an open field that offers a broad reach of darkness is great, and two organizations head to beaches where there is little light pollution to diminish the dazzle.

If you’d like to see the Perseids in the company of enthusiastic amateur astronomers at the Adirondack Public Observatory, head to Tupper Lake on Monday, August 12 at dusk, about 8:00 p.m. The roof will roll away from the dome of the new observatory, and folks will gather inside or on the Little Wolf Beach to stargaze.

At the boat launch on Rich Lake, in Newcomb, “Astro Bob” Fisher will explain the how and why of the Perseids in a free program sponsored by the Adirondack Interpretive Center, also on Monday, August 12. Call or email the AIC to register; bring a chair, blanket, flashlight and bug repellent for what could be hours and hours of sky watching.

Check the forecast for Monday to be sure of clear skies. The Newcomb event may move to Sunday if conditions are expected to be optimal.

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