Meteors pleasing to the eye as the Geminid rain shoots through the sky

The shower is formed when the Earth travels through dust trails left by 3,200 Phaethon and the dust burns up in Earth’s atmosphere, NASA said.

The sight was captured by James Macon, 31, who takes pictures of the Geminid shower and others every year.

This year’s shower even surprised him, he said.

“This was a really dense shower,” said Macon, who spent four hours taking photos at Halibut Point State Park in Rockport. “It was pretty amazing and I’ve never seen one like this before.”

A view of the Geminid meteor shower over Halibut Point State Park in Rockport.
A view of the Geminid meteor shower over Halibut Point State Park in Rockport.James Macon / @ newenglandnightskies (Custom credit)

During the peak, those who saw the colorful sight could have expected to see about 60 meteors per hour, or about one per minute, according to NASA. The American Meteor Society said they received reports of 60 meteors per hour, which they classified as “slightly less than normal.”

“It is a bit too early to categorize this view as we expect many more reports to come in the coming days,” said Robert Lunsford of the American Meteor Society.

And despite the cold weather from Sunday evening to Monday, the sight caught the attention of many. Tina Radel of Kennebunkport, Maine, was shooting local Christmas lights on Sunday night when a shooting star caught her eye.

“I kept seeing them left and right and in all directions,” said Radel, 49.

After realizing it was a rainstorm, Radel went to Cape Porpoise to continue taking photos, seeing meteors every minute.

“I consider myself lucky to be in the right place at the right time,” she said.

A meteor flew over Kennebunkport, Maine on Sunday night.
A meteor flew over Kennebunkport, Maine on Sunday night.Tina Radel

Alyssa Labrie, 25, from Goshen, went to a nearby baseball field and sat on a picnic blanket with her family and watched meteor showers growing up.

Sunday night she was able to regain that same feeling through the skylight of her car in her hometown, where she has returned after living in New York City for two years.

“This gave some hope during a global pandemic,” she said.

She picked up her camera after seeing the first meteor and was able to take pictures of the moment, seeing two meteors per minute for most of the downpour from her Berkshire town.

“It was really a completely wide view of the Milky Way and it was beautiful to witness it here,” she said.

The shower lasts until Thursday.

Breanne Kovatch can be reached at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter at @briannekovatch.