All my life, I’ve thought the earliest sunset and the latest sunrise comes on the Winter Solstice. But I’ve been misinformed by my science teachers! And so, probably have you.
I’ve a real fan of astronomy and science, so I read a lot and watch quite a few science shows. Today, I’m wondering how I could have missed this juicy tidbit of information about the winter solstice?
My goal is to always learn one new thing a day. It’s early morning right now — and I’ve already learned something I didn’t know before. Did you?
Read this fascinating article from The Atlantic:
The Astronomical Hijinks of the Shortest Day of the Year
The solstice isn’t for more than a week, but the earliest sunset of the year is already upon us. How’s that possible?
If you live around latitude 42N—a well-populated latitude in North America and Europe, taking in Boston, Rome, and Vladivostok—today is the day you’ll experience the earliest sunset of the year. Those who live farther north, in London or Moscow, can expect the earliest sunset on Thursday. Those farther south, in Miami or Mumbai, already had their earliest sunset a few days ago.
The earliest sunset really comes in the first week in December, and the latest sunrise occurs in early January. Yet December 21 really is the shortest day of the year. Why?
Wait a minute. Isn’t the solstice, December 21, still more than a week away, the day of the earliest sunset?