Alberta meteor. Eh.

By Phil Plait | November 20, 2008 10:43 pm

UPDATE: CTV news has some pretty spectacular footage on their website.

News flashes are coming in (like from the Calgary Herald and The Edmonton Sun) that a very bright fireball lit up the skies in Alberta and Saskatchewan, Canada around 5:30 p.m. local time on Thursday. There are reports of a loud boom as well, meaning whatever it was got low enough to where air was thick enough to transport sound. There are several reports that it hit, but I always remain skeptical of those: when a meteor drops to the horizon it looks like it hits, but meteors very rarely do. But given how bright this one was (judging from the reports) it’s possible a piece or several pieces made it down. However, it also sounds like this was pretty remote territory, so we may not know for a while.

If you hear anything new, leave a comment here. If you saw it, then report it to the Meteorite and Impacts Advisory Committee to the Canadian Space Agency.

Tip o’ the Whipple Shield to Dan Abal and Tom Cochrane.

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Comments (109)

  1. Ian

    Why do I have to hear about local news from California?

    Perhaps you should come to Alberta, give some talks (through our new CFI community), and bask in our open skies (where death comes from ;-)).

  2. Davidlpf

    He is in Colarado now, but I know the feeling.

  3. Al Gillespie

    “Saskatchewan”

  4. Our local Auburn California newspaper just ran a story about someone who saw a very bright green fireball to the north at 5:37 pm on Tuesday night:

    http://www.auburnjournal.com/detail/99313.html

  5. Is green the most common color for these slow ones? All I’ve seen recently has been green and slow, or tiny, fast and white.

  6. Jill

    I live in Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan (5 hours east of Edmonton, AB) and I only witnessed the big flash of light in the sky from my living room. It looked a lot like lightning, but I knew it wasn’t that since it’s November and flipping freezing outside! I really didn’t like how my first thought after seeing the flash was “OH NO! Aliens! Better get my tinfoil hat!”. I guess I wasn’t the only one thinking that way because people on my facebook friend’s list were breaking out the “war of the worlds” and “independence day” references! I’ve been checking BA all night to see if you’d write about it!

    I’m learning to be more skeptical, (hell, even more reasonable) thanks to your Blog and JREF! But it’s kind of difficult when I live north of a huge tourist attraction (Crooked Trees in Hafford, SK) that people honestly believe the trees are all gnarled and crooked because an alien stopped by to take a leak on them! I kid you not! Or that a couple of years ago the virgin mary appeared on someone’s garage door in Meadow Lake, or the “ufo” sighting at Waterhen Lake. Saskatchewan appears to be the Woo Woo Capital of Canada! HELP!

  7. Alberta… where you can see the death from the skies before it hits you.

  8. Krystal Kamanos

    It was ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLE!!
    The magnitude was extraordinary -8 at least!
    Green like you wouldn’t believe; it had an orange/red core surrounded by blue all engulfed in a green flame with a great billowing tail of green.
    It lasted about 4 seconds coming down at and angle from North to South almost perpendicular with the horizon.
    It was just SO big, I thought it had to be an airplane it was so close but the flames weren’t right. Unfrtunately my window was closed to I didn’t hear anything.
    Once in a lifetime, I was infinitely lucky to have seen this, for whatever reason I happened to look up hmmmm maybe I did register a noise after all.
    I thought it couldn’t have been a Leonid because we’re so far past the peak but reports are now coming in (thank you) so it’s very exciting!
    Already reported it and everything!

  9. sketchy

    sounds like this was pretty remote territory

    Yeah, Edmonton is only a City of One Million people spread over like 683 km2. Totally remote.

    You’re probably right, though, if there is anything left it’s probably lost forever, buried under a glacier or stuck in the roof of some Igloo.

  10. Nice try, sketchy, but I know Canada better than that. If it hit, it did it hundreds of kilometers from Edmonton!

  11. dan2

    Holy jumpin’, someone uploaded a video from a police dash camera, can’t really confirm the veracity though http://ca.youtube.com/watch?v=e_2aX-784sw

    and the regular news footage from youtube http://ca.youtube.com/watch?v=2HH7piToho4

  12. Clay

    I was lucky enough to see it too… I thought it was a missile or something at first, it suddenly was like Daylight outside…. HUGE fireball off to the east (I was about 2 hours east of Edmonton)
    It was incredible… it wasn’t just a little light, it gave off light like the sun for about 5 seconds.. I could see the fireball, the smokey trail,.. we thought it was about a mile away but low and behold, it was apparently WAY far away..
    and yeah, we’re remote. Relatively

  13. csrster

    The police dash video dan posted above is amazing. The meteor was bright enough to turn the sky blue. It’s also pretty good data for triangulating the landing zone, assuming they can identify what street the police car was on.

  14. Cody

    yeah i seen it too. Just in red deer i looked far east and looked like a shooting star at first. Then the brightest light ever

  15. jest

    I missed it. However, I was out the night before and saw quite a few Leonids.

    I had a few friends report to me that they saw it, and one of them said it altered his night vision for a short time. I’m in Red Deer, which is between Edmonton and Calgary, and apparently it was nicely visible.

    Someone claimed it could have landed near Lacombe (which isn’t necessarily “remote” but not exactly a large population). That report could have stemmed from speculation, and that’s my bet. Assuming it did land, there’s a lot of large tracts of farm land to search. Unless someone figured out its trajectory, it won’t likely be found. Though stranger things have happened.

  16. There are some reports that it could have come down 200 km south of Calgary. That is very remote territory.

  17. TheWalruss

    Holy smokes this is so cool to read about!
    The excitement in the comments is palpable!
    I wish I had seen it!

    I did see a very huge meteor one winter about a year ago in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. I was watching the aurora with some friends – soft velvety green sheets with pulsating white waves from the north – and then ZOOOOOOM, a big bright thing with what appeared to be a smoke trail. A few minutes later, another ZOOOOOOOM.

    At the time I thought they were missiles from Russia heading for DC – it was definitely the right heading, so there was a sentimental moment with my friends (we weren’t quite sober) where we pondered the fact we got to see the beginning of the end of civilization lying in the snow and watching the sky dance for us.

    I’m glad they turned out to be rocks from space instead of rockets from Russia!

  18. Vic

    I was 10 km east of Lacombe and it was way ENE of me. Quite spectacular, never seen anything like it before. My guess is it melted an igloo somewhere North of Saskatoon.

  19. huma

    dan2: i like the description for the second clip: “UFO meteor crash in Alberta better footage” :) even more so – the tags :)

  20. Craig

    @Phil RE: Sketchy’s comments…
    I had a similar reaction as Sketchy. Edmonton and Calgary are both 1million+ population and there are hundreds of small towns all over Alberta and Saskatchewan. Saskatoon has over 250 000 people so it’s no small town either. I live further north than Edmonton (in NE BC) and I had to chuckle at your comments about the “remote area”.

    Oh well, you’re an astronomer after all, and I give you full credit for even knowing where Canada is and the names of two of our provinces. [grin]

  21. Craig

    Oh, and a small correction on your headline…to be a proper Canadian stereotype, the headline should read “Alberta meteor, eh?” I need to fix the hole in my igloo now. I hope that my wife gets home with the dogsled soon, so I can go and hunt a seal for dinner…

  22. Lawrence

    Question – how large would an incoming meteor need to be before it popped up on one of the various military radars (normally watching for missles)? I mean, they can track warheads, which are pretty small (about the size of a steamer trunk) – but are the pointed in the right directions, given the typical meteor tragectory?

    I ask, because if we do ever get hit with a semi-big one & it takes out a city (maybe in some part of the world that has the right type of missiles, but not the radar to know it wasn’t coming from an enemy) there could be retaliation against a supposed-foe before it became clear it wasn’t a warhead detonation.

    Just curious.

  23. Chip

    Almost coincidence – a bright, greenish fireball was also reported over Sacramento California the night before, on the 19th. I was in Sacramento last night but wasn’t outside to see it. The story was reported by local news media.

  24. Jamie

    Global Edmonton has some video, including the dash one.
    http://www.globaltv.com/globaltv/edmonton/index.html#

    My sister called me in a panic about it, I had just, and I mean just gone in the house. OH well I’ll catch the next one….

  25. Ryan

    I managed to take a photo of a smaller fireball about 3 years ago.

    http://dominusdeus.deviantart.com/art/Fireball-25225028

  26. David

    At the Calgary RASC meeting last night Don Hladiuk present video from his all sky camera which put meteor right on the horizon. Speculation for area of interset is the Lloydminster area.

  27. dre

    I agree with Craig: The headline actually reads like a dismissal of the reports. “Alberta Meteor, Eh?” would work better. I was trying to figure out why you didn’t believe the reports because I didn’t understand how the headline should be read. [Meh.] and similar single-noise-word sentences seem to be in fashion when showing disdain on the intertubes, and [Eh.] too closely resembles it, given the punctuation.

  28. mike

    I saw it from Lac La Biche Alberta. It’s east of highway 36 for sure and south of LLB .

  29. Dave Wiley

    I wonder how big a fireball a grease gun would make?

  30. Ken

    I live in Stettler, Alberta and our power here serged twice within a couple of seconds at the exact time people saw this.

  31. Tracey

    My husband and I were lucky enough to be outside when this happened (we live in Gravelbourg, SK). We saw it come down, to the NNW of here, it was impossible to miss if you were outside. We thought something nearby had exploded (my husband is very aware of these possibilities, as one of the local volunteer firefighters). It was one of the most impressive things I have ever seen. The orange/red core was easily distinguishable, and a huge aura of light around it.

    I’m guessing that if planes went up and flew a pattern similar to what you would if you were looking for a lost person, the impact crater should be visible.

  32. Bruce Almighty

    Hey, maybe it hit Big Valley (SE of Edmonton) and took out the Creation Museum there.
    Nah, we’d never be THAT lucky.

  33. slw

    Interestingly, there was another presumable meteor that hit at around the same time on the opposite side of the earth. People in Tallinn, Estonia saw a bright flash and heard a loud rumbling noise as well. Unfortunately since it was at 5am, there doesn’t seem to be any video footage or even many people that actually did see the fireball.

  34. Grizzly

    Remote? Meh. About as “remote” as the Nebraska Colorado border.

    Still, it was purdy.

  35. amphiox

    Craig: A little nitpick, but as someone who lived the majority of his life in Alberta and Saskatchewan, I must tell you that Western/Prairie Canadians, in general, do not use the expression “eh”. That’s more a Eastern Canadian schtick. (Though I must confess I spent four years in Toronto, and not once, ever, heard anyone, use that expression.)

  36. Tc

    I was in between Humbolt, SK and saskatoon heading west and it looked like it was gonna land right on top of me. But It looked more so north and west of saskatoon. If we get everyone one on here to say which direction we saw it we probably could get a general idea of an impact area….if any

  37. Craig

    @amphiox: I was born in Saskatchewan, and I use “eh?” all the time! [smile] I know lots of people who speak that way, but hey, it’s a big country and I have no doubt (NOT “no doot”) that there is a wide diversity of Canadianism, eh? It is a funny stereotype though, eh? [grin]

    Cheers to you, eh!

  38. @amphiox:

    Speak for yourself. I’m a born-and-raised Albertan (I’ve spent most of my life in Edmonton), and I use “eh” a disturbing amount… problem is, I don’t notice unless someone points it out. :)

  39. Dewes

    It was the bag from that astronaut!

  40. kuhnigget

    I love the graphic behind the news anchor on the CTV Newsnet footage (on YouTube. search for edmonton meteor). It shows the earth floating in space with a bloody huge flaming object about half the size of the planet aimed right for it. Now if that one hit, that would be a show!

  41. amphiox

    Craig and Brett: Hmm. Interesting. I was born in Edmonton, spent 18 years there, and lived in Saskatoon for 7 years, and I cannot recall ever, once, hearing the expression “eh” ever used by anybody! I suppose it is possible that its use is so ubiquitous that I just don’t notice it, having internalized it completely, or that the actual usage is sufficiently different from the stereotype (which is my basis of comparison) that I’m not associating the two in my mind.

    It’s also possible that this is due to the fact that Canadian English, is, technically, my second language, (I spoke something else until starting kindergarten age 5) though by now it is my main language and by far my best one.

  42. Gary Ansorge

    Dang! You folks in Canada have ALL the luck,,,

    I wonder if Google earth watch could have captured that on the way down?

    GAry 7

  43. Gary Ansorge

    OK! I just checked Google Earth and I can’t find any big holes in the ground anywhere near Alberta or smoky forest fires. Anyone have any idea how to access Googles(earth) historical database???

    GAry 7

  44. @amphiox:

    “I suppose it is possible that its use is so ubiquitous that I just don‚Äôt notice it, having internalized it completely”

    TBH, I’ll bet you that’s the case. 99% of the time, I never notice I’m using the expression. It’s only when I spend some time with American friends that I suddenly realize how much I use it. After all, it’s really just a short phoneme tacked on to the end of a sentence. It’s pretty easy to overlook if you’re used to it.

  45. Sheri

    I live just south of Wainwright and it lit up my kitchen like the middle of the day. My husband was outside by Edgerton and had an amazing view of it and thinks it came down in Saskatchewan.

  46. Quatguy

    Anyone from Lloydminster, Saskatoon or northern Sask. who could let us know what direction they saw it? It sounds like it may have been somewhere in central Sask.

  47. chris

    I bet I know what this was… NASA astronauts lost a tool bag two days ago with 2 grease guns, a hammer, and other items… see the video here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7737250.stm

    It was one of the largest things ever “lost” in space. This would account for the different colors emanating from the fireball (different materials burn different colors).

    Just my take, but I think it’s a good bet.

    Comments?

  48. kuhnigget

    The dashboard cam footage is also an excellent example of how easy it is to get confused about objects in the sky, including where they are headed, and how far away they are. The fireball getting larger and brighter as it approached the horizon mimicked the effect of it approaching, even though it was headed away from the camera.

    UFO nutters take note.

  49. chris, it’ll be a long long time before that tool bag re-enters our atmosphere. years for sure. That’s a good guess, but they’re unrelated.

  50. Maybe my use of the word “remote” was wrong, I meant that it probably feel in an unpopulated area that would make it hard to pin down the exact site. I didn’t mean it like really far from anywhere, just an empty area.

    As far as “eh” goes, it was a silly joke. I know lots of Canadians who say it, and lots who don’t. So take off.

  51. I wish there was a general Internet abbreviation, like LOL or IAWTC, for:

    “I know! I know! I read about it too! It’s friggin’ awesome!”

    IKIKIRAITIFA?

  52. AAzure

    It was incredible – the brightest fireball I’ve witnessed (this is my third). It was so bright I thought someone launched a firework missile.

    I was walking East and it appeared in front of me about 35′ over the horizon. It was brilliant orange with debris sparks falling off of it – a second later it flared brilliant white and then changed color to green (copper-burning green) with orange debris sparks and then disappeared 10′ above the horizon. I heard no sound, though I was beside a noisy highway.

  53. Phil,

    We’re not complaining about the use of the phrase, “eh.” We’re just correcting your punctuation, eh?

  54. Logan

    Im looking for vids right now since i missed it :(

  55. Spacemoose

    Canadians dont really use the word “eh”, the use “hey”. Like “that meteor was crazy last night hey?”.
    I really wish I could have witnessed that meteor. I was driving home just outside of Edmonton around 5.30 and didn’t notice a thing. :)

  56. Matt

    I live in Lloydminster and by what I have read here and heard around town today I would say that the meteor landed not far south of here, if any pieces survived! People here reported something like firework sparkles for awhile after the flash. I wa in the house and the flash lit up the outside but I went out the front door, facing west, and didn’t see anything else. About 10 or 20 seconds after I heard what sounded like faint booms coming from south of town. Over the years there have been alot of meteors found south of Marsden Sask. which is not far south of here. There are farms and sand down there but it is a little remote. However it is hunting season and there are alot of mule deer down there and its very sandy with sparse vegetation. Some archeological society sets up a metoer collection day in Marsden sometimes.

  57. JMA

    All you folks wondering about impact… are there any seismic readings suggesting one?

  58. Canadian

    I had no idea so many Albertans read BA. (vic – shout out to the 7-8-2!)

    And to put the “eh” thing to rest, the official Canadianized title of this blog post would be “That was some meteor in Alberta, eh?”

    -K

  59. ioresult

    I know a guy who had a meteorite land in his backyard. He sold it 10k$ to the local planetarium. Lucky bastard.

  60. Josh

    I just stumbled across this. I was driving in Edmonton, eastbound on 127th ave, when I saw this. It was absolutely unbelievable! It started out as a blue ball, then brightened and got bigger. It turned bright, intense yellow and then fizzled into a red ball that disappeared.

    I thought it was a firework at first, but then I realized it was traveling in a downwards direction. Shortly afterwards, I saw a low-flying plane coming in to land at the municipal airport. Can you imagine what THEY saw?!

    It was traveling generally south-southeast. My guess is that if it hit anywhere, it would be southern Saskatchewan or Manitoba.

    And I use “eh?” all the time. It’s extremely common in Edmonton.

  61. gopher65

    Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa:(. *sobs* Something like this happens near me (FINALLY) and I miss it because my window is pointing in the wrong direction:(.

  62. Crazyspace

    I live in Moosejaw SK and I saw the object in the N traveling NW. It looked like a firework at first but the it looked like a missle and how it lit up the sky and clouds I thought I was going to see a huge mushroom cloud. I got pretty excited about that, but unfortunatly no boom. Oh well, we’ll get em’ next time those commies!

  63. tjm220

    Dang! I was heading home from Calgary and decided to stop at the Safeway in Chestermere right around the time the event happened and missed the whole thing.

  64. Dwayne Gibson

    I, along with two others, was fortunate enough to see it. South of Whitecourt (1 1/2 hours NW of Edmonton)

    We were driving across a field from hunting and when I saw it I thought it was someone shooting an emergency flare (albeit the brightest flare I had ever seen). Then the two I was with said it had zoomed across the sky.

    The most amazing thing about it was that it seemed to have landed only a few hundred feet away.

  65. Heres a couple fellow Canucks in reinforcing the ‘eh’ stereoptype(click my name.). They did it too make fun of a CBC request. Do not here it much here in the maritimes now if we can only understand what some Newfies are saying.

  66. jest

    I’ll speak for myself here, as a Canadian, and let everyone know that while not all Canadians say “eh?”, I do.

    And I too am impressed with the number of fellow Albertans on here. Way to represent your province!

  67. Ilanna

    Yes it was spectacular to say the least. I have no doubt it came down. Distance is hard to judge, but most likely in Sask or Man, not in Alberta.
    Craig, you must live way up North, like near the north pole, we here in Alberta don’t have igloos, and the only seal we see are at the zoo and dogsleding is only a sport not a means of transportation.

    The expression “eh”, comes from “eastern” Canada, if your around Newfoundland, you will hear it often, only after a couple of Canadian comedians got hold of the expression was it exploited and then generalized as Canadian. We don’t mind though, we enjoy humor.

  68. And before anyone from Newfoundland jumps on me I have known plenty of people from there and you are wonderful people and there was only on person I used newf or newfie as an insult but most people had another insult for him that started with “a”.

  69. Ilanna

    Way to go Davidlpf.

  70. Spacemoose

    Looks like I really missed out. I flew back to Edmonton from Vancouver that day but didn’t land until about 4.30pm. I probably would have freaked out if I saw that crashing into the earth through the airplane window tho lol

  71. Trent

    Another Lloydminster resident here although I didn’t see the meteor myself either. I saw the flash of light (it was almost daylight for a couple of seconds) through a window and then heard the rumbling (sounded like a large vehicle passing by closely) which lasted 15-20 seconds. I have heard some reports of fragments falling about 30 kms NW of Lloydminster close to Marwayne Ab. I would assume that if it landed it was realatively close due hearing the sound of it.

  72. onafricanwings

    I live a little NorthEast of Lloydminster (just north of Paradise Hill). I witnessed the fireball trailed by what seemed like sparks and the large smoke trail left. The Smoke trail was still visible 20 minutes later although the wind had carried it. I can tell very close how far east/west this was when it went out (that doesn’t mean impact) but would not be able to tell how far south. I was sitting at my computer and the horizontal blinds next to me were only slightly open. This opening is where i viewed the above from. It’s lowest point of burning was pretty much due south of us. Look on a map and go south of Paradise Hill. My guess, between Lashburn and Maidstone but no idea how far south.

  73. Scott

    I was lucky enough to see this from an airplane window at about 24,000 ft. At first it was very scary as the sky around the plane lit up and I looked out the window to our northeast(we were probably around Innisfail) and saw it heading down, what a great view! We were in a small private plane and the pilots were pretty excited about it.

  74. Northernfella

    Hey, I life right near the Sask, AB border about 1.5 hours north of Lloyd. I was driving eastward on the highway, saw the flash, but it happened so fast, I looked all around but could not place exactly where it came from cause I was in a danged minivan.

    But, I would suggest it didn’t come down East of Pierceland. or North of Pierceland, the main directions I had a pretty good view of. Incredible experience.

  75. Jim Harvey

    Location:
    East end of Toronto
    Time:
    Mid to late sixties
    Scene:
    Me and friends leaving schoolyard after baseball.
    We look into the western sky and see a fireball heading north.
    I thought that an airplane had exploded but it just carried on.
    The c0lour was yellow – orange. Very bright against an early evening sky.
    Six O’clock newscasts that evening reported sightings throughout the province .
    The newscasters speculated that it could have splashed with a hiss into Hudsons Bay.
    Me? I Hope that it is still zooming.

  76. Mena

    Amphiox, you just aren’t hearing it. It’s fairly common. I have been married to a Canadian for 8 years and was going back and forth quite a bit for a few years before that. I find it obvious, and sometimes kind of annoying. My favorite was when we went with some friends to a Chinese restaurant in Regina and they waiter was doing it. I mentioned to the people that I was with that I found it interesting that he was ending most sentences with “eh?” when English wasn’t his first language and none of them had noticed it. They haven’t gotten to me yet!
    (Oh, and my husband doesn’t do it but he seems to be unique. What we don’t understand is how his brother got a thicker accent than either he or their mother have. Their father was from Turkey so he had an excuse for having a different accent. Oh, he didn’t do the “eh?” thing either.)

  77. mighty favog

    I live in Houston and I saw a brilliant green fireball low in the sky at 5:30 on Thursday while I was sitting in traffic. It was so exceptional that I noted the time and my location in a notebook, as well as the location of a prominent landmark that would allow me to figure out the direction on a map which turned out to be ENE from my position. I thought it was just an exceptionally bright local meteor, I would not have believed that it could been seen from that distance. Has anyone else heard a reported sighting from this far away?

  78. David Janzen

    It was amazing… I will never forget seeing it. I was driving east in Sherwood Park, AB at 5:27pm MST when the sky just started to light up for about 3 seconds. That’s when I saw a huge fireball directly in front of me. The leading part was a brilliant white like an enormous welders arc. The tail had smaller yellow pieces flying off of it kind of like some fireworks. The first point that I could see it was about 40 degrees up from the horizon and by about 20 degrees above the horizon, it went black. From my perspective, the path it made was coming down towards the earth in a southerly direction at about a 50 degree angle. The entire event lasted about 7 seconds. Incredible.

  79. Matt

    Matt from lloydminster again. Some guy from a university in calgary talked to the local radio station and said they were going to come up here in a week or 2 and start searching for pieces of meteorite between marsden sask and macklin sask. I suspect that the booms we heard for 3 or 4 minutes ofter the flash were sonic booms from pieces falling, leonids are very fast. It was seen so far away because its intensity and the height. the mesoshere (where meteors burn in the atmosphere)is 85 km above the ground.

    Now I undertand my wrighters block. I say eh so much it’s hard to wright anything down without it. I just didn’t realize til now because the eh is almost subconcious.

  80. I was raised in Alberta, being born in Drumheller, living in Michichi, Fort Saskatchewan, Westlock and Edmonton. I married and moved east in 1953. I never saw an igloo. I never saw a seal. So there!

    I never saw a meteor, which I find somewhat disappointing. I was interested reading these comments and trying to figure out where the meteor came down, if it indeed did come down (they can evaporate, you know). The one report which included red, orange, yellow, green and blue made me even sadder not to have seen it.

    But if it came down, it was probably in Saskatchewan or Monitoba.

  81. Radwaste

    “Question – how large would an incoming meteor need to be before it popped up on one of the various military radars (normally watching for missles)?”

    Lawrence, if you read the Columbia Accident Investigation Board report, about the destruction of the Orbiter, you’ll find that American radars “saw” the amorphous-carbon/carbon-fiber fragment, broken from the left wing, leaving the Orbiter’s track. So, apparently, though they do not advertise the fact, Space Warfare Command can track a small chunk indeed, one that isn’t even well suited to reflect radar energy.

  82. mighty favog

    My last post wasn’t very detailed, but I had been up for 22 hours after four hours sleep and wasn’t of a mind to type coherently. I had been telling people about the bright meteor I had seen, but I was flabbergasted when I sat down at my computer and saw this report.

    So far I haven’t found any mention of sightings as far away as mine (Houston). Saskatchewan and Alberta are NNW of me, and what I saw was ENE, very low in the sky, angling toward the north. Even though the sky was not dark, it was easily brighter than the planet Venus at its brightest. I saw it for about a second, dropping into view in my windshield as I sat at a red light. It appeared yellowish, but then flared brilliant green before winking out quickly close to the horizon.

    I should be able to provide a fairly precise approximation of azimuth and trajectory by comparison with a tall landmark building; it occurred to me that someone smarter than I am could correlate that data to verify whether it was the same object or another associated body, as well as help pin down the actual trajectory. Anyone have any input on this?

  83. lisa

    If you read the universe today posts people are posting that they saw the same thing in arizona and new orleans.There is no way this could have been the same objects.Has anyone else heard any other reports or have any thoughts on this?

  84. Cole Bump

    ok i must say…the people in saskatchewan saw it falling to the west…and the people in alberta saw it falling to the east…so it did hit the earth…thus it exploding when it hit the atmosphere and falling to pieces as it fell…so there is why i think it hit the earth…

  85. Edmonton

    I wasn’t lucky enough to see the ball of fire but I was in Edmonton on the Anthonney Henday traveling North when I saw the sky light up. It really did look like lightening except the way it flashed, it look like something exploded. And as I recall the lights around be seemed to flicker off then on but only for a split second. Wish I would have seen it but the Videos are amayzing and someting I will never forget.

  86. J. D. Mack

    Sorry I’m so late leaving a comment, but I just back back from a cruise and didn’t see this before today.

    I was in Port Canaveral, Florida on Thursday. My sister and I were on the deck of the boat looking due west, when a bright blue meteor streaked across the sky. It was maybe four or five hand-widths above the horizon. Our first thought was that someone had set off a firework. It had that kind of look.

    I wish I could remember what time it was. it was definitely in the evening – perhaps 8:00 or 9:00 PM.

    J. D.

  87. mighty favog

    After reading the reports of people in Louisiana, it’s becoming clear that there were at least two objects that came in around 5:30. The object I saw was ENE of Houston, which coincides with the location of people in Louisiana. At first I thought it just might be a trick of perspective from a single object when it was very high in the sky that would make it appear in that direction as it angled in and headed north, but that’s probably not very likely. Regardless, the one I saw was the most spectacular meteor I’ve seen.

  88. Matt

    The meteor could be seen from so far away because of atmosheric refraction. Refraction would cause any object just under the horizon to look like it was 20 degrees above the horizon. It would also magnify the object like when the sun, moon or stars are close to the horizon, eh. Take into account that meteors burn up in the methosphere (85 km above the earths surface, eh)and that Lloydminster (by all accounts the meteor exploded directly over Lloyd and therefore my house)is over 2000 feet above sea level and you will get my point. Very cool that you could see an event that happened back home while you were in Florida. There could have been 2 object but having been underneath the thing (very bright even in the house, like a nuke) I suspect it was only one.

  89. Dan

    Since Thursday, I have noticed that I have strange powers from the green rocks I picked up near the meteor crash site.

    I can build an igloo in 2 milliseconds flat, drink 10 cases of Kokanee beer without getting a buzz, and run from Calgary to Edmonton in 2 minutes.

    If anyone in Calgary wants bagels or smoked meat from Montreal, let me know. I’ll go for a quick run there and pick some up for you… (eh?)

    Dan

  90. JB of Brisbane

    I apologise in advance, but someone had to say it…

    “And that’s how it was for the next ten nights – a flare, bright green, drawing a green mist behind it; a beautiful, but somehow disturbing sight…”

  91. Sir Struggle

    I saw a similar (but not nearly equal :( ) meteor in the mid 90’s about this time of year when the shower was supposed to be a “storm” that year. It went directly overhead north to south and even made noise. It sounded like a bottle rocket or similar firework. Unfortunately, it didn’t have the uber impressive flash at the end that this one had. I guess it just skipped off. That flash is what makes all the video so cool. It just makes you say “Why couldn’t I have been there?” followed by many curse words.

  92. mighty favog

    Matt: Not sure about Florida, but I had considered the idea of atmospheric refraction that might have allowed me to see the meteor in Houston. However, even though it appeared at, as near as I can tell, precisely the same time, and had a similar light curve (bright flash at the end), it was not only to the ENE (toward Louisiana) but also appeared to be traveling downward and only slightly toward the north, meaning that it was either moving toward or away from me, ie, east or west. I had also considered that it might have been visible simply because it was very high as it started to burn; but once I saw the video shot in Canada it became clear that was not the same object. The bright terminal flash appeared very low in the sky, and I have a hard time believing that atmospheric refraction could make it appear higher in the sky from my vantage point. From the video and other witness reports, I’m now convinced there were at least two objects at 5:30, and possibly one a few minutes later in Arizona.

  93. Kilgannon
  94. Jerimiah Harris

    Im getting so tired of people saying this was the damn tool bag… I mean, you have to be really really stupid if you think our gravitational pull is that strong, to force an object to fall at that great of a speed… I didn’t even go to College and I know that.. and there will almost defiantly be at least 1 salvageable piece from it, just cause you cant see it glowing, doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist.

    This was perhaps one of the Greatest Meteorites that I have ever seen, or will ever see. I thank the Peace Officer whom had his dash cam on, for the great video of it falling to the earth, to me, inside my house at the time, it seemed to be Lightning, but knowing better, I shoved it off as a trick of my eyes.

    I am glad that this event was recorded, When I look at the dash cam video, I cant help but to feel small.. and wish even more to learn more about this rock.

    Oh, and I’ve been all over Canada, Even in the Frozen North, not many Igloo’s up there either, and Everyone still says eh! The only ones whom don’t, are the ones whom would rather pretend there American, or from Ontario..

  95. Glen

    A few conflicting reports here, if I read the comments correctly those in Saskatoon or Lloyd said it was south of them, one guy from Lac La Biche claimed it was south, and one guy from Pierceland claimed it was north of Pierceland.

    Pierceland is roughly the same lat as Lac La Biche, and north of Lloyd and Saskatoon, so someone is mistaken.

    Me, I was half sleeping in the back seat of my carpool vehicle but I overheard my fellow carpoolers yammering about a “real f#cking bright green flare” or something, at the time we were heading due west about the same lat as Lac La Biche, and I’m pretty sure they said it was in the southeast sky from where we were.

  96. chinacorp

    i’m truely intrigued by the events which took place over canadas skies late on thursday night (20/11/08), with regards to the sighting and possible impact of a small meteor, the one thing that has truely left me scratching my head though is that if said meteor did impact the ground why the heck hasn’t its location been pin pointed yet. I would have thought that with all the satalites and tracking stations set up across the northern hemisphere (especially in america) someone would have located the impact site by now, right?????

    unless of course the impact/crash site is being kept a closely guarded secret, either that or the meteor didn’t impact the ground, it is possible that said meteor merely bounced off of the earths atmosphere…..

    just a thought

  97. Matt

    Most of the witnesses on this blog, close to Lloydminster, were north of Lloyd. Cold lake and lac la biche are both at a latitude 150 km north of Lloyd and the other guy that was at paradise hill was 30 km north then another 50 or so east. Most were driving and maybe didn’t have a compass so have to guess on direction. Any one in lloydminster who was outside at the time of the meteor report it bing almost directly overhead. Any one from lloyd who reports other wise was probly driving back to lloyd from somewhere (oilfield) and weren’t in town. The radio (106.1 fm the goat) reported today that a meteor collector from arizona will come here this week and has offered a $1000 reward for the first person to bring him a piece bigger than 1 kg. He expects that people should look between marsden saskatchewan and macklin sask right along the alberta saskatchewan border, If you read one of my earlier posts you will see that that is what I predicted.

    As for radar, cfb cold lake is about 150 km directly north of Lloyd(10 or 15 minutes as the f18 flys), and the meteor (I bet it was as big as a huey helicopter) probly entered the atmosphere between here and there. Norad operates radars from cold lake nato has a training facility there. I guarantee they got it on radar.

    I am much more sure that those were sonic booms I heard for 2 or 3 minutes after the flash, caused by many fragments of the meteor (it would have exploded into tiny pieces). I think I will go now and try to find a 1 kg chunk of radiated rock.

    ttl eh

  98. Matt

    sorry that was a $1o,ooo reward

  99. Nicole

    I also saw the light that night. I live south east of macklin. Judging by the direction that I saw the smoke trail in about two minutes after the big light show, if you can go by that it might help out in finding the location a little better!
    everyone describes it as one big light. I saw three, before the forth one which lite up the night sky. The first three grew more intense with each flash. I also talked to my kids who were not even close to the windows at the time,they were woundering what the red and blue light was that lite up the house. I also talked to my nephew later that night who had seen this thing go in two completely different directions!!

  100. Andie

    i live in tampa florida, and i saw it on my way home. to me, the actual meteor and tail were visible for much longer than in the Canadian police video, and i did not see the sky light up. but it was definitely the same thing.

  101. Matt

    Local news headline today says “Fireball was 10 tonnes.”

  102. Kelly

    In response to the comment below. I see the same thing. I live in Ocoee florida and was on my way to work in clermont and see exactly what you described. Looked like a firework going off however very large. It was really awesome. I know the leonoid meteor shower had just peaked around the same time.

    {{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[I was in Port Canaveral, Florida on Thursday. My sister and I were on the deck of the boat looking due west, when a bright blue meteor streaked across the sky. It was maybe four or five hand-widths above the horizon. Our first thought was that someone had set off a firework. It had that kind of look.

    I wish I could remember what time it was. it was definitely in the evening – perhaps 8:00 or 9:00 PM.

    J. D.]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]]}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}

  103. Kelly

    Too add to the above, the time i seen it was about 1030pm eastern time.

  104. barb

    Fragments flew off the Meteor November 20th landing on my Mothers land , we went looking and found 2 piece’s. Very exciting.

  105. jay

    I witnessed a massive fireball at the exact time from northern MT. I would have guessed it to be in a line around Swift Current.

    From my inner circle, it was an attempt by our lame duck president to start a war in the Alberta oilsands region. But, keep that quiet.

  106. Funny seeing this just a few years later. :) I’m pleased to say I now have a 44gm piece of that bad-boy on my desk at home. The Buzzard Coulee meteorite turned out to be a boon for collectors, despite the effort required to get a piece. Took three days of walking to get 2 pieces, but we got em fair and square. ūüėČ

    Buzzard Coulee is remote though. You nailed that one Phil. :)

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