By Kristina Pydynowski, AccuWeather senior meteorologist
August 11,2017, 11:57:06AM,EDT
The Perseid Meteor Shower will streak across the sky of the United Kingdom this weekend, and the weather will offer the best viewing conditions on Saturday night.
As a cold front crosses the U.K. and moist air flows in from the Atlantic, Friday night will be often cloudy, making it difficult to view the meteor shower across the south of England, the East Midlands and northern Scotland.
There may be enough breaks in the cloud for residents elsewhere in the U.K. to catch a glimpse of the celestial show.
Where cloud and rainy spells prevent the meteor shower from being seen on Friday night, conditions will improve in many areas on Saturday night as high pressure briefly builds overhead.
Little in the way of cloud cover is expected from eastern Scotland to the Midlands and southwestern England.
More cloudy spells are in store for southeastern England and western parts of the U.K., but there should be enough partial clearing for those in London, Belfast and Glasgow to catch a glimpse of the meteors.
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Cloud spills are likely to make western Northern Ireland the worst location in the U.K. to view the meteor shower.
Sky gazers throughout the U.K. will want to grab a jacket before heading outdoors on Saturday night. Temperatures will dip down to 6-9 C (40s F) across the interior and the lower teens C (50-55 F) along the coast and in the London area.
Robert Lunsford from the American Meteor Society anticipates 20-30 meteors per hour to streak through the sky in the dark, rural areas in the early morning hours of Saturday.
“The Waning Gibbous Moon will wash out the full potential of this meteor shower, which could otherwise produce closer to 100 meteors per hour at its peak,” AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist and Astronomy Blogger Dave Samuhel said.
More meteors will be seen after midnight than the evening, but the late night is also when the moon will rise higher in the sky, making it difficult to see all of the meteors.
"The moon will wash out the faint meteors," Samuhel said.
“Sky gazers will want to start looking for meteors immediately after sunset before the moon rises,” Samuhel said. “But even later at night, you will still see the brighter meteors."
The Perseid Meteor Shower is most known for very bright meteors streaking across the sky, according to Samuhel.
“The meteors leave 'smoke trails,' technically known as trains,” he said. “You will be able to see these bright meteors despite the moon.”
Even after the shower's peak, some meteors may still be seen streaking across the sky early next week. However, clouds and rain from a new depression will once again spoil the show.