The Summer and Winter constellations are on opposite horizons for most of December. In the west, the setting bright stars, Deneb, Vega and Altair form the Summer Triangle. At the bottom of Cygnus, is Albireo, a beautiful blue/gold double star, as seen in a telescope. In the middle of the sky is Pegasus, and its Great Square, with the Andromeda Galaxy nearby. In the east, the Pleiades are gaining height with red Aldebaran below and Capella to its left. The Belt of Orion hugs the horizon with Sirius, the brightest star rising in an hour’s time.
If possible, observe at a dark location and when the Moon is not bright. A bright Moon will make it more difficult to see the stars and impossible to see clusters, nebulae and galaxies. Only a small telescope at lower magnifications, around 50x, is required to see the objects listed below. The planets and Moon are best observed with a telescope around 100x.
Wednesday, December 4,
Wednesday, December 11
Wednesday, December 18
Wednesday, December 25
Objects marked with are best with binoculars, or a small telescope, because these objects are large in size.