Perseid meteors

August 11, 2017

The Perseids are usually the best meteor shower of the year. The peak will be on Saturday, with perhaps as many as 100 shooting stars per hour (although any meteor shower is best after midnight). that’s 1-2 a minute. There’s a rumour going around that this year it will be far more amazing than usual, perhaps even visible in the daytime. Sadly this is baloney, probably for the clicks. The…

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10th Anniversary of the Starlight Declaration

April 14, 2017

Next week will be the 10th anniversary of the Starlight Declaration. Among other things, it says, An unpolluted night sky that allows the enjoyment and contemplation of the firmament should be considered an inalienable right of humankind equivalent to all other environmental, social, and cultural rights, due to its impact on the development of all peoples and on the conservation of biodiversity. Since the declaration was made on La Palma…

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Equinox sunrise behind the Roque

Sunrise behind the Roque de Los Muchachos at the equinox
September 21, 2016

  A remarkable number of the archeological sites on La Palma line up with astronomical calendar events: particularly sunrise or sunset at the solstice or equinox, and the rising and setting of the star Canopus. In 2013 I went with a group of friends to one of these sites to see the sun rise behind the highest point of the island, the Roque de Los Muchachos. It meant an early start,…

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Summer Solstice at El Verde

This evening will be the solstice, when the sun appears at its farthest north in the sky. For the northern hemisphere, it’s the longest day of the year. (And for the southern hemisphere, it’s the longest night of the year.) La Palma has several archaeological sites which mark the solstice. One of the easiest to get to is El Verde in El Paso. Park beside the cemetery and follow the…

June 20, 2016
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Live Streaming the Eclipse

A total eclipse of the moon
September 27, 2015

The Canarian Tourist Board will be live streaming tonight’s lunar eclipse at http://www.thebestclimateintheworld.com/geminidas starting just after 2 am Canarian (and London) time. Just to remind you, the moon is at almost its closest approach to the Earth, so it’s will be a supermoon – noticeably bigger than usual. And at about 6:30 pm, the moon should rise behind the shadow of the island on the sea. If you’re on La…

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