Perseid meteor showers to run through the month

by Sue Hokanson, - Quartz Mountain Nature Park

July has passed and August is here. Most of the 10-day forecasts have southwest Oklahoma hot & dry. High temperatures and no rainfall will mean Lake Altus-Lugert will continue to drop. The lake started August at 90% full. Which is a great level to be at, as the Main Swim Beach has sandy beaches to enjoy rather than sitting on rocky rip-rap.

With temperatures in the triple digits forecasted for the near future, please remember some hot weather safety tips: wear light colored clothing that is loose; avoid outdoor activities during the hottest time of the day (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.); and drink plenty of water, juice or other non-caffeinated drinks.

If you’re planning on hiking in and around Quartz Mountain, please start up the mountain as soon after sunrise as you can. By 10 a.m. you should be well on your way down the mountain. Carry more water than you think you’ll need. The rocks hold heat and it will be hotter than you anticipate.

The dry forecast does have some positives. It means there will be fewer clouds in the sky to adversely impact start gazing. The Perseid meteor showers run from late July to late August and peak around Aug. 11 to Aug. 13. The Perseid meteors appear to stream away from their origin near the border of the Perseus and Cassiopeia constellations. The new moon is on Aug. 14 this month, so there will be little light reflecting from the moon to dim the meteor show.

The best time to see the meteors is several hours before dawn on any morning between Tuesday, Aug. 11. And Friday, Aug. 14. Find a nice dark location (no street lights) with an open sky view (no buildings, mountains or trees blocking your view), settle back in a reclining chair (or lie on the ground) and look straight up. At a very dark, rural location, you can probably expect to see about 100 meteors each hour just before dawn. Any light pollution will cut down on the numbers of meteors you see. They’re still happening; you just can’t see the fainter meteors in the brighter sky.

by Sue Hokanson,

Quartz Mountain Nature Park

Reach Sue Hokanson at

Reach Sue Hokanson at

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