Outside Jewell

Always Dress for the Water Temperature

It’s May. Do you know what the water temperature is?

May 1-15 = 47ºF / May 16-31  = 51ºF

Every Spring, warming air entices many people to go out in small boats when the water temperature is still deadly cold. 50ºF water doesn't sound particularly cold or dangerous if you mentally compare it to 50ºF air.

Average sea water temperatures in Portland, Maine:
  • January 34ºF
  • February 33ºF
  • March 37ºF
  • April 1-15 39ºF; April 16-30 41ºF
  • May 1-15 47ºF; May 16-31 51ºF
  • June 56ºF
  • July 61ºF
  • August 62ºF
  • September 59ºF
  • October 52ºF
  • November 47ºF
  • December 39ºF
Relative Water Temperatures

True or False?

If the combined air and water temperatures are below 120 degrees Fahrenheit, a wetsuit is a must and a drysuit is highly recommended.

Continue reading

Milky Way Galaxy

We’re Losing the Night Sky – to Light

Two-thirds of people in the US can’t see the Milky Way from their homes. The stars that shape our galaxy disappear from view due to outdoor lighting which is too bright, stays on all night, or illuminates the sky rather than the earth. Night lighting also interferes with the rhythms of human, animal, and plant life.

US at night

Continue reading

Lyrid Meteor Shower

Lyrid Meteor Shower 2018

Skywatchers in the Northern Hemisphere will have a chance to see the Lyrid meteor shower between April 16 and April 25. The best day to see them, weather permitting, will be extremely early in the morning on Sunday, April 22.

Lyrid meteor

Meteor showers occur when the Earth crosses the path of a comet, colliding with a trail of comet crumbs. As they burn up in the atmosphere, the meteors leave bright streaks in the sky commonly referred to as "shooting stars”.

Continue reading