Why Arizona could be the best place to watch April's Lyrids meteor shower

If you're a fan of meteor showers and everything space, you may want to make a trip to one of Arizona's dark sky communities this weekend. 

The second major meteor shower of 2017, NASA says, will peak in the morning hours on Saturday, April 22.

According to NASA, the Lyrids are one of the oldest observed meteor showers -- known for fast and bright meteors.

NASA says Lyrids are typically as bright as the stars of the Big Dipper.

As far as major meteor showers go, the Lyrids are considered mild, but have been known to leave glowing dust trails behind that last for several seconds.

Lyrids run from about April 16 to April 25 each year, peaking on April 22. NASA says 10 to 20 Lyric meteors per hour can usually be observed during the shower's peak.

This year, NASA says "patient observers will be rewarded with the sight of 18 meteors per hour before dawn from a dark sky location."

Arizona just happens to be home to the densest grouping of dark-sky locations in the world -- giving interested residents several ideal places to watch the meteor shower: Flagstaff, Oak Creek and Sedona.

RELATED: Dark skies help keep us healthy, safe

This year's conditions are expected to be especially good for Lyrids viewing with the moon nearing its new-moon phase, NASA says.

MORE: 2017 celestial calendar

PHOTOS: Meteors over Arizona

© 2017 KPNX-TV


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