The Time is Now for Viewing the October Orionids Meteor Shower

Moon Will Effect Your View of the Orionids Meteor Shower 2008

Moon Phases

Q: When is the Best Time for Viewing the Orionids Meteor Shower?

A:  The best time to view a meteor shower is when there is no moon in the sky. On October 20 and 21 the moon will be in a Last Quarter Phase and Waning Crescent Phase; this means just under 50 percent of the illumination from the Moon will brighten the sky. Believe it or not, that is the bad news for the Orionids Meteor Shower. The good news is that October 20 and 21 will have the heaviest activity of the Orionids this year. The best place to view this celestial event is any dark region absent from city lights and when viewing showers remember that it is extremely hard to predict when the meteors will dash across the atmosphere. Your best chance for viewing is also after midnight. Why? Because the Earth turns into the trajectory path of the meteoroids. Only the brightest meteors can be seen and actual meteors seen per hour may vary from person to person and location to location, but one can expect to spot up to two meteors every ten minutes; however if you’re in the right place at the rate time it is rumored you can see up to seventy meteors per hour! If indeed you go out to observe the shower this month, please report to us how many you view in an hour, I’d love to share with you your meteor experience.

Here are some other posts about the Orionids of October:

Orionids Meteor Shower 2008 of October
The Orionids Meteor Shower of 2008 is Underway
Orionids Meteor Shower of 2008 Has a Sidekick

Hope You Catch a Glimpse!

Where to Look

Where to Look

4 thoughts on “The Time is Now for Viewing the October Orionids Meteor Shower

  1. I just saw a few meteors and the temperature is 38 degrees here. The first meteor was light blue in color. Another meteor was a yellowish orange. At the location where I am, the moon was almost directly in the apparent radiant. I suggest when viewing this shower for best results; wear a cap and use the brim to shade your eyes from the Moon’s glare.

    A little meteor-viewing tip here: just because the radiant is near Orion, doesn’t mean that is the only place meteors will appear in the sky. They can appear anywhere, but you will notice that if you traced them backwards, they would point to that similar spot next to the constellation. This should distinguish the difference between the two meteor showers that are taking place right now, the Major Orionids Meteor Shower and the Minor Epsilon Geminids.

  2. Meteor Mark,

    My husband and I put this event on the calendar over a month ago and have been prepping our 9 & 10 year olds for it. They have never seen a “shooting star” and were so psyched. We had a whole learning lesson on what they really were. We went out at 1:30am on the 21st for about 1-1/2 hours and saw a max of about 15. ((we r in FL)) We went back out this morning before school ((the 22nd)) at 6am and saw more than the night before (about 10 in about 45min.) IT WAS AWESOME!

    So, my question is:

    They wanted to get up even earlier in the morning (the 23rd) and try again. Do you think it will still be good viewing even though its past its peak?

    Thanks for any info you can give us and Happy viewing!


  3. Sabrina,

    Just because the shower is passed it peak, doesn’t mean there won’t be activity. The bad news is yes; the Orionids are past their peak. The good news is the moon will be in the “Waning Crescent” phase, which means about 30% of the moon will be visible and the sky will be darker than the past couple of mornings. You can expect probably 1 – 2 meteors every fifteen minutes. I will be posting some new showers coming up next month that have been known to be spectacular in the past. Unfortunately the moon may obscure those, as it will be shedding much more light. I should add that there is also another minor meteor shower going on right now called the Leo Minorids.

    Check this post: Orionids Meteor Shower Has a Sidekick

    There is also what is called the Southern Taurids and Northern Taurids occurring now as well.

    I can’t guarantee there will be much activity, but you can always give it a try. Bookmark my site and I will be posting next months schedule really soon. Could be a great viewing session, I am researching it now. I hope you enjoyed the site and of course the Orionids!

    Keep your head up,

    Meteor Mark

  4. i was outside on the 29 at around 230 or 300 and saw 4 little meteors then when i was about to go in i opened the door and across the sky shot the biggest one ive ever seen it was definately as big as my city across ways and had a like real firery tail i loved it