Rare, astral events are always worth waking up early or staying up late to experience. On the early morning of February 18, one will be taking place over North America that will require Texans to be up particularly early to witness. Texas' view of the February lunar occultation will be one you don't want to miss out on.
An occultation, for those wondering, is when a celestial body is hidden by another one when the latter passes between it and its observer. In this instance, Mars, the Earth, and the moon align and make it appear as though Mars has been devoured by the moon.
This rare event will be viewable across North America, but the timing of it will be different from state to state. If you have a friend on another coast, don't depend on them to tell you what time to see this astral miracle.
Texans are unfortunately going to have to wake up much earlier than others, but not as early as somewhere like LA or Denver. Phew!
If you're in Texas and want to witness the lunar occultation, you'll need cloud-free weather conditions and to be awake and watching the sky between 5 and 7 a.m.
Weather isn't something we can control, obviously, but setting your alarm totally is. If you're not a morning person then consider grabbing a couple of friends so you can take turns monitoring the moon in the sky.
According to WTSP, a storm may end up ruining the occultation for many across central and eastern U.S. Texas, that could mean you!
Cities such as San Antonio, Austin, and Houston may be seeing some rainy weather on February 18, but so far it is forecasted to rain later in the morning, after 9 a.m. Hopefully, the skies stay clear until after the astral occurrence happens!
We're still hoping for the best and that the far-reaching storm holds off long enough for not just Texas but for every state in the central and eastern U.S. to experience the event.
The northern and central Rockies also have clouds to worry about, as it's still snowing where they're at.
If you're in an area that wasn't mentioned, your chances of experiencing the lunar occultation without any interruptions from the weather are greater than most.
Arguably one of the best parts about this particular event is that you won't need a telescope to witness it.
The moon and Mars are both bright enough to view with little to no aid, so you can save the money you'd have to spend on a telescope for something else.
Using a pair of binoculars to get an even closer look isn't a bad idea, though that's not necessary either.
Whatever you do, just be outside during the hours necessary and as long as weather permits, you won't be disappointed!