INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — Look up at the skies this weekend and you may get a show from the heavens–if the weather cooperates.
NASA says the first major meteor shower of the year—and decade—will be visible in North America over the weekend, peaking in the late hours of Jan. 3 and the early morning hours of Jan. 4.
Viewing conditions for the Quadrantid show will be excellent in some areas thanks to the quarter moon on Jan. 3. NASA said the Quadrantid is one of the better meteor showers of the year even though it has a much shorter peak than others—just a few hours compared to a day or two.
Of course, weather will play a key factor in your ability to see it. Meteorologists say overcast skies in Indiana may make it difficult to see the meteor shower. Rain and snow are expected Friday and Saturday.
The visibility of meteor showers from year to year has a lot to do with whether there’s a bright Moon in the sky at the time or not. This year, the Moon will set soon after midnight local time, meaning viewing conditions should be good, provided your local skies are not obscured by winter weather.
If you look northeast, you may be able to see as many as two dozen meteors per hour. As is often the case with these observable phenomena, your best view will be away from city lights. Be sure to bundle up, too, and give your eyes plenty of time to adjust to the darkness.
The best viewing time is between midnight and dawn, according to NASA.