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Today’s Almanac – August 30, 2013

National Park News

The Skies

Sun and Moon Data

To find sun and moon rising and setting times for your park or office, go to the U.S. Naval Observatory’s Complete Sun and Moon Data for One Day webpage.

Night Skies

An update on the moon, planets and night skies for the month of September:

  • Venus – The planet is in the west-southwest just after sunset, the brightest object in the sky.
  • Jupiter – The planet appears among the stars of the constellation Gemini in the morning sky. It rises around 2 a.m. at the beginning of the month and about 30 minutes later with each passing week.
  • Mars – Mars appears in the eastern sky before dawn and is fairly high in the sky by dawn.
  • Saturn – The planet is in the west-southwest, not too far from Venus.

Calendar of celestial events for September:
  • Thursday, 9/5 – New moon.
  • Sunday, 9/8 – The moon passes less than a degree from Spica and less than a half degree from Venus just after sunset, with Saturn a little to the left and above the moon.
  • Thursday, 9/12 – First quarter moon.
  • Thursday, 9/19 – Full moon.
  • Sunday, 9/22 – The autumnal equinox occurs at 4:44 p.m. EDT.
  • Thursday, 9/26 – Last quarter moon.

For more information on stars, planets and other night sky phenomena, go to “The Sky This Week” page at the U.S. Naval Observatory page at

The Weather

Watches and Warnings

The principal watches and warnings posted as of early this morning were as follows. Note that these change over the course of a day and that this listing represents only initial daily forecasts. Click on this link for a full-sized map showing these hazards:
  • Red flag warnings – Southwest Montana.
  • Excessive heat advisories – Most of Iowa, northern Missouri, and adjacent areas in Wisconsin, Illinois, Nebraska and Kansas. Also the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
  • Flashflood watches and warnings – Southern California and Nevada and western Arizona.

For additional information on severe weather, go to the NOAA Storm Prediction Center at .

Tropical Cyclones

The National Hurricane Center is not currently tracking any tropical cyclones.

For additional information on tropical cyclones, go to the National Hurricane Center web page at

In Memoriam

On August 31, 1973, Thomas Brown, a ranger at Lake Mead, died of a heart attack during a SCUBA diving exercise.

Click here for a full listing.

From The Morning Report Archives

Today’s incident from the Morning Report archives:

Kalaupapa NHP – A fire was discovered in the old hospital building around 5:30 a.m. on July 18, 1990. Although the building was unoccupied, it was being used as a storage area for both the park and the Hawaii Department of Health and a wing was being remodeled as a maintenance office. Other park buildings were scorched, but the fire was confined to the old hospital. The new hospital was evacuated, with no injuries reported. The building was a total loss; the cause was unknown at the time of the report.


Ruby on RailsRuby: 1.8.7, Rails: 1.1.6