We are starting to see the winter constellations rising above the eastern horizon. This is the realm of many night sky wonders; some are visible with just your eyes. Although it may be a bit cold, the views are worth it.

The starting point is the constellation Orion. On Dec. 1 at 8 p.m. he was laying on his side in the east. The three stars of his belt point upward from the horizon. Moving southward from the belt are three faint horizontal stars, his sword. The center one is the Orion Nebula. It is easier to see later in the evening. Moving higher in the sky is a V-shaped group of stars, the face of Taurus the bull. This is an open cluster called the Hyades. Moving a bit higher in the sky you will see a small cluster of stars looking like a tiny dipper, the Pleiades.

Come join us on public night at the Insperity Observatory on the first Friday each month, from sunset to 10 p.m.: humbleisd.net/observatory.

Aaron Clevenson
Author: Aaron ClevensonEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
I am the observatory director at the Insperity Observatory in Humble ISD. I am also an adjunct astronomy professor at Lone Star College-Montgomery where I teach solar system astronomy and stars and galaxies astronomy. I am the author of the astronomy textbook, “Astronomy for Mere Mortals.” I am a past president of the North Houston Astronomy Club, and was the chair of Astronomy Day in Southeast Texas in 2015 and 2016. He is an observing program director with The Astronomical League, coordinates their Master Observer Progression Awards, and has authored six of their observing programs.