Close Encounter of the Fourth Planet: Mars visible across Michiana skies

NOW: Close Encounter of the Fourth Planet: Mars visible across Michiana skies

NEXT:

Clear skies and mild temperatures tonight will make conditions absolutely perfect for sky-gazing across Michiana, with Mars taking center stage.

The Red Planet is "in approach," and it's the closest it has been to Earth in 20 years (only 38.5 million miles). Mars will appear big and fairly bright in the sky, rising in the east in the evening before reaching it's highest point around midnight in the southern sky. 

If you miss Mars tonight, there are additional opportunities to planet-watch during the rest of October.

Mars will be the star, so to speak, once again next Tuesday (October 13), when the planet is in "opposition." This means the planet will be the brightest in about 2 years in the southern sky. 

If you're more of an early riser, you should be able to see Venus near the crescent moon about an hour before sunrise from October 12-15.

And, toward the end of October, you could catch a glimpse of a planetary double-feature. Saturn and Jupiter will be visible in the southwestern sky from October 21-23, just after nightfall.

There's plenty to see in Michiana skies over the next few weeks, so happy sky-gazing!

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