Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Up / Down / Around

      Things are looking up. Especially if we get some clear skies, because this is the week of the Perseid meteor shower.  It's due to peak on Wednesday night/Thursday morning (August 11&12). Meteors are always best seen late night, but early evening is good for planet watching. Venus is bright in the west during twilight. Meanwhile, looking to the southeast you can see Saturn (dimmer but higher) and Jupiter (brighter but lower) as the sky darkens. Here's a link to an informative article on this year's Perseids. 

Next week Saturn and then Jupiter will see the nearly full moon 
pass close by on consecutive nights.
Sky and Telescope illustration

     If it's not meteors, it's mushrooms. Look down at the forest floor on your next hike and chances are you'll be rewarded with a nice variety of fungi. Usually fall is considered prime mushroom season but this year a wet summer has moved things up a bit. While I have an identification guide, I'm usually too lazy to use it. But you don't need to name them to enjoy them. I just marvel at the myriad shapes and colors. Such a nice bonus to time in the woods.

Coral fungi sprouting out of the leaf litter

     Finally, a few events from around the area:

     * Whipple City 5 & 10K races plus a Kids Fun Run. Saturday, August 14 starting at 8 am in front of the Middle School on Gray Avenue in Greenwich.

     * Vermont Public Radio stargazing party with Mark Breen to be broadcast Thursday, August 12 at 9 pm.

     * Mushroom Id workshop with Sue VanHook at Merck Forest in Rupert, Vermont. Saturday, August 28 from 12 to 2 pm.

     * Fungus and Fern walk at the Pember Museum's Hebron nature preserve. Sunday, September 12 at 10 am.

Web image