Sleeping Bear Persied

Sleeping Bear Perseids, photo by Kenneth Snyder

Without question the best meteor shower of the summer in Michigan is the Perseids, EarthSky’s Everything you need to know about the Perseid Meteor Shower has (predictably) all kinds of details and diagrams to help you get the most out of this annual display. The most important thing is to start watching now as the August supermoon is full this weekend.

Every year, from around July 17 to August 24, our planet Earth crosses the orbital path of Comet Swift-Tuttle, the parent of the Perseid meteor shower. Debris from this comet litters the comet’s orbit, but we don’t really get into the thick of the comet rubble until after the first week of August. The bits and pieces from Comet Swift-Tuttle slam into the Earth’s upper atmosphere at some 210,000 kilometers (130,000 miles) per hour, lighting up the nighttime with fast-moving Perseid meteors. If our planet happens to pass through an unusually dense clump of meteoroids – comet rubble – we’ll see an elevated number of meteors.

…The swift-moving and often bright Perseid meteors frequently leave persistent trains – ionized gas trails lasting for a few moments after the meteor has already gone. Watch for these meteors to streak the nighttime in front of the age-old, lore-laden constellations from late night until dawn as we approach the second weekend in August. The Perseids should put out a few dozen meteors per hour in the wee hours of the mornings of August 11, 12 and 13.

Read on for lots more.

View his photo big as the sky and see more in his Sleeping Bear Dunes slideshow.

More meteors on Michigan in Pictures!

Point of Origin, part 2

July 29, 2014

Point of Origin

Point of Origin, photo by Jamie MacDonald

From the annual Jackson Hot Air Jubilee earlier this month.

View Jamie’s photo bigger and see more in his awesome Jackson Hot Air Jubilee slideshow.

(here’s Point of Origin, part 1 in case you missed it)

Milky Way Time Lapse - Silos - 2014 - D7100-142

Milky Way Time Lapse – Silos – 2014, photo by Matthew Eddy

Cloudy skies are in the forecast this weekend, but you can still check the stars out!

View the photo background big and see more in Matthew’s Milky Way Time Lapse video on YouTube!

UFOs Over Michigan

July 15, 2014

UFO "Cyclops" Hovers Over Saginaw River

UFO “Cyclops” Hovers Over Saginaw River, photo by AmBelCanto

“Where there are people, there are UFOs.”
~ William Konkolesky, Director, Michigan MUFON

The Mt. Pleasant Morning-Sun had a feature this weekend on the Michigan chapter of the Mutual Unidentified Flying Object Network aka MUFON. In the article, Michigan Mutual UFO group watches the skies, MUFON  Director William Konkolesky talks about his experiences and then details what a MUFON investigator does:

“We can take soil samples, we have labs that can identify anomalous readings in the soil. One of the things we would be looking for is unusual chemicals in the soil,” he said.

Konkolesky said that although the reported UFOs are often things like “airplanes and Chinese lanterns,” some investigations aren’t that simple. “More than 80 percent of the reports we get a year (turn out to be) identifiable objects and the rest are things that you can’t easily explain,”

Konkolesky said those interested in being MUFON investigators have to apply online, buy the training materials necessary to become an investigator, and pass a certification test. “Some of the things (investigators are taught) are basic things like how to identify an airplane, data collection, and how to interview a witness, just to name a few,” Konkolesky said.

Konkolesky said he understands why some may be skeptical about the existence of fully-functional life on other planets. “If you haven’t encountered the UFO phenomenon yourself, it obviously takes a lot for somebody to feel the need to take it to heart,” Konkolesky said.

View this photo from the 2007 Bay City Fireworks bigger and see more in AmBelCanto’s slideshow.

Lake Superior Thunderhead

Lake Superior Thunderhead, photo by Lake Superior Photo

So far this summer we’ve gotten some free fireworks show such as the storm that swept through last weekend. Shawn wrote:

It was fireworks over the lake last night, my dog was not pleased, however I was ecstatic. Lightning was going off a couple times a second and it did not let up, but stayed mostly in the clouds. I watched this for over an hour, and it just drifted by, stars overhead the entire time – go big screen to see the stars right top of frame.

So… what are you waiting for? Go background big and see more at Lake Superior Photo on Facebook.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Ready for the Fourth

July 3, 2014

Starry Sky

Starry Sky, photo by Steve

BBQ items? Check! Fireworks plan? Check!! Wall o’ stars? Check!!! Have a happy 4th of July weekend everyone!!!!

View Steve’s photo bigger and see more in his LX7 slideshow.

PS: Check out Detroit News feature 50 fun things to do for the Fourth.

Grand Marais Splash-in

June 27, 2014

Splash-in 2014

Splash-in 2014, photo by Gary McCormick

Every year in mid-June Grand Marais holds their annual Splash-in where seaplanes/float planes come from the US and Canada for a weekend of fun. Gary was there two weeks ago and got some cool shots!

View Gary’s photo background bigtacular and see more in his Grand Marais slideshow.

Mirror Morning

June 4, 2014

Hasrot Beach

Haserot Beach, photo by lomeranger

One of the things I love about Spring and early Summer is how calm the water can be.

Jason shot this at 6 AM on the Old Mission Peninsula near Traverse City. View his photo background bigtacular, see more in his Landscapes VII slideshow and purchase it if you wish at his photography website.

There’s more sunrises and more Spring wallpaper on Michigan in Pictures!

Old Dock

May 20, 2014

Old dock III (1 of 1)

Old dock III (1 of 1), photo by Todd Bielby

One day’s ruin is another day’s scenery…

View Todd’s photo background bigtacular and see more including a black & white view in his slideshowFYI, he shot this pic at Forrester Park, about 20 miles north of Port Huron.

Beautiful Beast

May 13, 2014

Beautiful Beast

Beautiful Beast, photo by Jamie MacDonald

Yesterday saw strong storms in southeast Michigan including some tornado sightings (click that link for photos).

Jamie took this shot last week with a Rokinon 7.5mm Fisheye. Check his photo out bigger and see more in his Stormy Weather slideshow.

More wild & wonderful weather on Michigan in Pictures.

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