Watching the Skies: Big and Little Dippers in sight this month

Watching The Skies

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A trio of planets will group together in the night sky at the end of the week.

Just a few weeks ago, we were able to see the incredible conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn. The two planets are no longer paired up directly, but they are still close together. This week, Mercury will join the pair.

On the evenings of Friday through next Monday, look to the west in the evening to see the three. Jupiter will be the brightest, followed by Mercury and then Saturn. Binoculars may help to pick out Saturn and Mercury, but Jupiter will easily be visible with the naked eye.

You won’t want to wait long after sunset to check out the trio. Once the sun has gone down, you’ll have about 45 minutes before they sink beneath the horizon.

The three will be grouped mostly closely together on Sunday.

There will be good viewing of the Big and Little Dippers in January. The bowl of the Little Dipper will be straight down from the North Star, Polaris, which is the top of the handle of the dipper. The two outer stars in the bowl of the Big Dipper point directly to Polaris.

The Big Dipper will be in the north northeast in the evening. The handle will be fairly low on the horizon, and the dipper will be to the upper right.

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