Fans of celestial wonders and lovers of warm weather are in for a treat this weekend with clear skies, a chance to see the Lyrid meteor showers and the year’s first 70-degree days.
Thursday was 2021’s first 70-degree day in the Puget Sound area, and we’ll see continued warming through the weekend.
Temperatures are forecast to reach highs of 75 on Friday and 77 to 80 degrees on Saturday and Sunday, according to Matthew Cullen of the National Weather Service in Seattle.
The Lyrids, which peak in late April, are one of the oldest known meteor showers and have been observed for 2,700 years, according to NASA.
“The Lyrids are known for their fast and bright meteors, though not as fast or as plentiful as the famous Perseids in August, Lyrids can surprise watchers with as many as 100 meteors seen per hour,” NASA reports.
For best viewing, NASA advises, lie down with your feet pointing east between moonset and dawn and look up, taking in as much of the sky as possible.
“After about 30 minutes in the dark, your eyes will adapt and you will begin to see meteors. Be patient — the show will last until dawn, so you have plenty of time to catch a glimpse.”
Though the Lyrids seem to radiate from the Vega star in the Lyra constellation, it’s actually better not to look for them there.
For a more spectacular show, it is actually better to view the Lyrids away from their radiant, NASA said.
And of course, the warm weather will not last forever.
Cullen said a weak system is expected on Monday that will lower temperatures down to the upper 60s by Tuesday and perhaps bring a few showers.