Autumn’s equinox, 2010

Looking east at the moment of the autumn equinox. The small bright spot beneath the Moon is the planet Jupiter.

These are the weather and sky conditions at my central Phoenix, Arizona, home at the precise moment of the autumnal equinox, at 8:09 p.m., Arizona standard time, on September 22:

Temperature is 86 degrees F.,  dark and clear sky except for a few lonely clouds of cumulus drifting north along the eastern horizon, very light westerly breeze, a waxing gibbous Moon about 35 degrees up in the east with Jupiter only 8 degrees below it and south.  The Moon will hit full at 2:17 a.m., or in only 6 hours and 8 minutes.   For those who may wonder, Phoenix and most of Arizona does not observe daylight savings time.

It was cloudy earlier in the day with a threat of rain.  A few drops fell at the house in early afternoon.  As evening came on, the clouds vanished to the southeast.   Today’s high temperature was 95 F. and down from recent record heat that hit 111 earlier in the week.  The forecast has 100-plus temperatures returning in the next few days.

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