A couple night-owl friends and I are thinking of driving north of the city the morning of the 13th to view the meteor shower. But we have no idea where to go. Anyone know of a good spot we can park and hang out for a couple hours, say between 1-3am, that won’t have police or security moving us along?
I was thinking of heading either toward Long Grove or Lake Forest.
Wouldn’t the radiant of the shower be toward the east at 1-3 AM? I’d think somewhere unbusy along the lakeshore could work well for that, since everything east of you would be Lake Michigan and therefore extremely dark. Find a public park or straight-up unlit field somewhere between Chicago and Wisconsin on the lakefront and set up some lawn chairs.
Hadn’t thought about the direction we’d be looking in for the shower. I think we’ll be heading for Lake Forest since it’s the least dense area that’s not too much of a road trip. Maybe just keep eyes peeled for inviting public areas, it’s just that as far as I know, parks/forest preserves/beaches all close at sunset. So we could get kicked out at any time and have to find somewhere else, which isn’t really the most fun.
I haven’t pestered my friend with the sailboat at Montrose Harbor yet. It’s a work night for her, but… maybe. Right now I have three of us for sure, but could be four. Debating on taking the Rav4 or the Altima for the trip.
We’re limited to about an hour’s travel. With that, looking at the dark sky maps, we’re in just as much light pollution if we go north along the lake to Zion where we can hang at the beach as we are if we go anywhere else. The State Park in Zion is right on the border of red/dark red, and an hour or more in other directions still has us in the red.
Now I’m wondering if we’ll be able to see the shower. My cousins have a farm southwest of Chicago, but by the light map they’re still in the red. So I’m not sure what to make of it, because last time I traveled out there at night it seemed inky black to me (very citified!), to the point I was nervous traveling the totally unlit roads out there - so dark to me!
There are four of us for sure, all confirmed and leaving at midnight. We still have a week to figure out where!
Thanks for the links! I looked at the Planetarium event at Cantigny, it’s way early - we want to view the peak at 3am for sure. Though, if the shower is visible from Cantigny, it will be fine in Zion for sure then, so that helps to know! Looks like we’ll be a party of 5 now. Any more and we’ll have to switch to a van.