While we mortals are busy doing our part this Earth Day, nature will be putting on a performance for us in the night sky, perhaps as a reminder of what all this Earth Day stuff is for. The annual Lyrid meteor shower will reach its peak on April 22 – when we’re all feeling our earthiest. (Opening night was April 16 and the free show will close on April 25.) Astronomer Anthony Cook told National Geographic that an average Lyrid meteor shower “produces between 10 and 20 meteors per hour, but occasionally these rates increase to 90 per hour.”
So when and where can we catch a glimpse of the Lyrids? Cook advises watching “around the time of moonset (April 22 between 1 a.m. and 2 a.m., local time) and dawn.” The Lyrids will be more visible in the Northern Hemisphere than in the Southern Hemisphere, and it’s best to avoid urban areas. Cook also suggests finding an open horizon, “facing anywhere from north to east and gazing nearly overhead.” We hope you enjoy the show.