Crescent Moon and Venus
April 03, 2004
The above photo was taken on February 24, 2004 from Ampius, France and shows brilliant Venus and the crescent Moon, with that Cheshire Grin, meeting in the constellation Pisces. The Moon and Venus had an even closer apparition last week. Venus rides high in the western sky now, shining with a magnitude of -4. It's about as high above the horizon as it ever gets -- more than halfway up the sky (46 degrees above the western horizon). Notice the impressive earthshine (reflected sunlight from the Earth) partially illuminating the upper portion of the Moon.
Tonight, the gibbous Moon rests 4 degrees (8 moon diameters) to the left of Jupiter tonight, and Venus resides within the Pleiades star cluster. Binoculars will give a nice view of our "sister planet" and the "Seven Sisters" (Pleiades).