Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Summer Skies Mean Constellations!

Clear summer skies means stargazing! Finding constellations is fun, free, and easy. Check out our constellation tab at Utah's Adventure Family, or click on the links below for pictures and instructions on how to find your favorite summer constellation (All instructions are written with Utah's latitude in mind).

Big and Little Dipper: The Big Dipper is a cinch, but the Little Dipper can be a bit tricky. It is much fainter and looks less like a dipper. Check the link for more details. 

Cassiopeia: Queen Cassiopeia's crown, or chair depending on how you want to look at it, is easy to find in the northern sky. This is also an anchor constellation for many other night sky objects (to read more about anchors, click here.)

Cygnus the Swan: Cygnus is said to be a disguise for Zeus during his philandering. This constellation looks like a large cross and is directly over head in July. 

Draco the Dragon: Draco is tricky unless you have specific landmarks to look for. He is visible pretty much all year long here in Utah, but he tends to be washed out by the lights of the city sometimes. 

Leo: Leo the lion appears in the sky during the summer. He looks like a coat hanger to me, and he features Regulus, one of the brightest stars in the sky.

Lyra: The delicate lyre is a tiny parallelogram adjacent to Vega, which is one of the best known stars in the sky. This is a gem to find, and passes right over head in the summer.

Scorpius: Scorpius is a beautiful constellation that you can only see from June through August. It has a well known star, Antares to guide you.

Corvus the Crow: The crow flies through the southern sky all summer long. It is among the easier constellations to find, just five stars in the shape of a quadrilateral with a tail.

If you're interested in learning about Telescopes or Messier objects, you can use these links for more information.

For our reviews on hikes, museums, camping, and all other adventures in Utah, come on over to Utah's Adventure Family and follow us on TwitterInstagramFacebook or Pinterest.

For extra fun finding the constellations, attend a FREE star party with the Salt Lake Astronomical Society

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