|Occurred : 1/17/2004 20:30 (Entered as : 01/17/2004 20:30)
Reported: 1/17/2004 10:29:25 PM 22:29
Location: Lake Havasu City, AZ
Duration:About an Hour
|Weird Light fading out then brilliantly bright again.
I just recently moved to AZ from NH about 3 months ago and am fascinated by the stars I can see here unlike the big city that I came from, the sky at night here is breath taking.
On this particular evening I noticed an extremely bright star. From all the nights I've been gazing, I've never seen this particular one before. I was a little stunned at how BIG it was. Big and very very bright! It didn't twinkle, like some of the other stars did and for a brief moment got really spooked. I ran inside and did an Instant Message to my mother (who is in Nantucket, MA) and told her what I was seeing. She asked if I could take a digital picture of it. So I attempted to. I took a picture of the regular stars directly above me, of the little dipper and Orion's belt, but couldn't actually see it through the view finder. I took the picture anyway. I then faced that bright star and actually saw it through my view finder. That's gotta tell you right there how bright it was. I downloaded it to my computer and it showed up, blurred, as I couldn't keep a steady hand. I proceeded to try and take several steadier pictures but couldn't. I concluded that maybe it's the planet Venus but I'm not Astronomically inclined and don't know it's position. I figure I'll check back after an hour or so and see if it moves with the rest of the constellations.
My friend showed up to watch a movie with me but before we did, I pointed it out to him and he was just as baffled. He said he thought it was too low to be a star. Then thought it was a plane. But I said it's been stationery like that for the past 1/2 hour or so, it can't be a plane.
We watched the movie and about an hour later (9:30 pm), I stepped back outside to check on it. It had faded to a smaller redder shape and much lower to the horizon. Next thing I knew I was holloring for my friend to come see it. It got extremely bright again, I mean BRIGHT then would fade out then bright again, then fade etc... I asked him if there was a lighthouse around here and he said no. Then the faded light slowly moved to the right and lit up bright again.
... It's gone now..... I don't see it anymore.
For a brief description of my point of view....
From my back patio, I see the western sky. I am in the higher part of Lake Havasu City and can see the lake and the Indian Resort Casino in Havasu City, Ca. I can see the lights of the Casino. These are small pin points of lights and the one I saw had to be about 10 times brighter than the casino lights. Not being able to estimate miles, All I can do is guess that the bright light I saw was about 5 or 6 miles East of the casino lights which is probably desert.
I am really baffled by this and really want to know what I saw. In the meantime, I'm gonna research Venus's location. :)