Location: Toronto (Canada), ON, Canada
Duration: 2 secs
No of observers: 1
Reported: 2002-08-05 20:19:46 Pacific
Posted: 2002-08-16 00:00:00
red object flying low over Toronto at night
Shaped like the sole of a shoe, it crossed the night sky from west to east during darkness on a perfectly clear night (22:29. Aug 5/2002 in Toronto, Canada. It traveled along its length, unlike a bird. It seemed to be illuminated in red from below but there were no blinking lights. I first observed the object directly overhead but it did not seem at all to be among the stars; it seemed much lower. Though it was not streaking, there was no trail, the object went very rapidly, no more than 2 or 3 seconds and disappeared in the bright haze of the lower horizon in the ESE. The trajectory seemed mostly straight although halfway through, the object seemed to adjust its course slightly.
I'm a journalist, photographer, private pilot (lapsed) radio control airplane builder and flyer, amateur astronomer. I had been sitting outside for about 20 minutes, preparing for an evening of star gazing with my 10 inch telescope. I've been looking up at the sky during the day and during the night ever since I can remember (I'm aged 50). I was looking straight up at the stars when the object appeared. There had been occasional airplanes crossing my field of view shortly before and after (but not during) my sighting. This object was much lower and made no noise which I could hear. Although in a large built up city, the stars are still quite visible overhead. A few minutes later, when my wife joined me, we saw a small speck, a satellite go past the star Vega. As an astronomer I have observed satellites, man-made objects (ISS), comets and meteors moving through the night sky. This was like nothing I have ever seen before.
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