November was already going to be a good month for stargazing. Northern Hemisphere autumn brings earlier evenings, still-tolerable weather, and some fabulous celestial sights — not the least of which is the Leonid meteor shower.
Then Comet Holmes splashed onto the scene!
In late October a comet dimmer than Pluto exploded a million-fold in brightness. Visible without binoculars or a telescope, it's a sight to behold in even light-polluted skies. Comet Holmes is changing appearance night by night, and it should remain easily visible throughout November. It might be the strangest comet to appear in our lifetimes.
Finding Comet Holmes is a snap with if you download this podcast to your MP3 player. Go outside and let Sky & Telescope's executive editor, Kelly Beatty, show you where to look.
Clear skies, and happy hunting!