Sky Shows
by Maya del Mar

We finally have a clear night, and I just went out and looked at the spectacular western sky. We still have our winter treats. There is a trail of bright planets moving across the ecliptic, and tonight—and for the next couple of nights—crescent Moon has joined them.

At the bottom, closest to the horizon, is that glamour queen, brilliant Venus. She has been a jewel in the evening sky for months, but now she bids adieu. She will turn towards Sun this month (retrograde), and move rapidly below the horizon. Watch the western sky at the same time each night to see Venus fall in altitude. At the end of March she and Sun have their rendezvous, and in April Venus will reappear in the morning sky.

At the next step above Venus is the growing crescent Moon, radiant after a date with Venus. Moon is reaching towards Saturn, up and to its left (in the northern hemisphere) and will reach there March 1. Next stop is bright Jupiter on March 2.

Jupiter and Saturn are just to the right of the Pleiades, and Taurus, and Orion’s belt, the sky’s most splendid star grouping.

Jupiter is slowly moving away from Saturn, and we can watch them as they move closer to the horizon, and further and further apart. They will both sink below the horizon in May.

This morning’s show was also dramatic. Low on the southern horizon red Mars—now quite bright—is meeting red Antares, the major star of the Scorpio constellation. The fiery energy is gathering. Mars is the brighter body above.

On the early mornings of March 15-16 Moon will be in the neighborhood of Mars. That ole moon gets around!