Moon near Mercury and Venus December 24
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The moon near Mercury and Venus December 24
We lost Venus to the sun’s glare starting in October this year, after the brightest planet dominated the morning in early 2022. Then, Mercury recently disappeared in early November after its morning October appearance. Now, you can see the two inner planets in the evening twilight. The view is best about 30 to 40 minutes after sunset. However, if you haven’t found Mercury and Venus yet, let the waxing crescent moon be your guide to the two planets. Look for the moon in the sunset direction on December 24, 2022.
Then, once you find the thin crescent moon, look for Mercury and Venus nearby. In fact, the trio forms a nice triangle as the sky starts to darken. In the Northern Hemisphere, Venus will be closer to the horizon but brighter than Mercury, and Mercury will be closer to the moon. For Southern Hemisphere observers, the moon will be closer to Venus.
Additionally, the very thin moon will be glowing with lovely earthshine. It sounds like a great photo op to me.
The moon and five bright planets
But wait, there’s more! After enjoying the view of the moon, Venus and Mercury, look for Saturn, Jupiter and Mars. Seeing the moon plus all five bright planets is a special treat.
First, you’ll need a clear view from the southwestern horizon through the eastern sky. Then, look higher in the sky for a creamy, steady light. That’s the planet Saturn. Next, look south to find the brightest “star” in that area of the sky, which is the planet Jupiter. Finally, look east, where you can see brilliant Mars forming a triangle with the star clusters Pleiades and Hyades.
Bottom line: No matter where you live worldwide, let the thin crescent moon be your guide to Mercury and dazzling Venus on the evening of December 24, 2022.