Last updateTue, 18 Sep 2018 1pm


01 Nov 2013
by  - 
A common yet striking event is the monthly pairing of Venus and the crescent moon. In the closing 10 weeks of Venus’ current evening apparition, pairings will occur at dusk on Nov. 6, Dec. 5, and Jan. 1 and 2. Jupiter is usually the planet next in terms of brilliance after Venus, so its pairings near the moon, occurring at intervals of 27 to 28 days, are often impressive. The moon is always in its crescent phase when it is seen near Venus, but can appear in any phase, from a thin crescent to full, when it passes Jupiter. This month, Jupiter will appear near the moon on the night of Nov. 21-22, from four hours after sunset until dawn. Venus appears at greatest elongation, appearing a maximum of 47 degrees from the sun in our sky on Oct. 31, in the afternoon and evening sky, and on March 22,…
01 Oct 2013
by  - 
Follow the moon each day at dusk or dawn—and within one cycle, it will introduce you to as many as all five naked-eye planets, and the five bright stars of first magnitude within the belt of zodiac constellations. The new moon occurs on Friday, Oct. 4. Two days later, on Sunday evening, Oct. 6, about 20 minutes after sunset, a thin sliver of a young lunar crescent will appear very low in the west-southwest, 20 degrees to the lower right of the bright “evening star,” Venus. Valley residents would need to seek out a place with an unobstructed sight line in that direction, since the moon will be less than 6 degrees up at 7 p.m., within a half-hour after sunset. (In other words, if you’re in downtown Palm Springs or elsewhere near the mountains, you’re out of luck!) But the view through binoculars is worthwhile: Flanking the moon will…
01 Sep 2013
by  - 
The Coachella Valley is a great place for inspiring views of the night sky—and among the visually impressive events is the pairing of Venus and the crescent moon. While Venus is still visible in the evening sky for a few more months, Venus-Moon pairings will occur at dusk on Sept. 8, Oct. 7 and 8, Nov. 6, Dec. 5, and Jan. 1 and 2. Of these, the pairing this month, on Sunday, Sept. 8, will be the closest, and the moon will even help the observer spot Venus as they move together across the daytime sky. From Southern California, the moon and Venus appear closest, in the southeast sky shortly after noon, with Venus only 0.6 degrees, or just more than the moon’s width, from the northern cusp or point of the crescent. When the moon and Venus are highest—due south, nearly halfway from horizon to overhead around 3:15 p.m.—they’re…