Comet in the skies

The Comet PanSTARRS was visible above the Broken Back Range on Monday night.

“It was a race between cloud filled skies and Earth’s rotation dragging the comet down into the ragged mountains,” Kurri astronomer Col Maybury said.

Mr. Maybury said it the comet may be seen between 8.20pm and 8.50pm in the area about 10 degrees (a fist at arm’s length) above the range for the next week and then it will be gone.

“In low power binoculars, 8 X 42s, it was a most attractive sight. A pale orange comet with a widened tail. It glowed in the rays of the setting sun’s last glow,” he said.

Comet C/2012 L4 has taken millions of years to fall out of the Oort Cloud into this, its first passage round the Sun.

After swinging around the sun it will journey out into the dark regions of space and is estimated to return in around 110,000 years.

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