- Wed, 09 Jul 2003 22:37:02 -0700 (PDT) Kevin McLoughlin
Did anyone else see a *very* bright meteor falling a ways to the south of
Oakland, around 10 this evening? Either that, or the brightest wayward Roman
candle of my life. From my viewpoint driving down Highway 13 near Piedmont, it
looked like it was falling somewhere in the general direction of Mt. Hamilton.
Started as a slowly falling Venus-like star about 60 degrees above due south,
flared extremely bright a few degrees above the horizon, and then sputtered into
many short trails before disappearing.
If any of you were in a position to triangulate, maybe we can go meteorite
- Wed, 9 Jul 2003 23:34:44 -0700 Ronald Gross
I saw this as well. Like you stated it was very bright and from my
angle I thought it was going to hit ground (it only died out around 5
degrees above the hill in front of me). I was driving south on Highway
280 at around the Page Mill Rd. exit. From where I was it seemed to be
headed for the Los Altos Hills area west of Foothill College, but there
was a hill in front of me so I could not tell how far south it really
was. Pretty amazing sight.
Don't want to alarm anyone, but Mars IS getting pretty close. Could be
some sort of vanguard or something. (we have been sending a lot of
stuff THEIR way recently) ;-)
- Thu, 10 Jul 2003 00:04:07 -0700 John R Pierce
I was at the Skyview Drivein* in Santa Cruz, and I saw something flash in
the sky, it almost looked like lightning. It was behind me and to my left
as I faced screen 1 from a bit too far on the right, I mostly only saw the
reflected light. The moon was at about 10 oclock relative to us, and I'd
guess the flash came from around 7 oclock.
we saw Pirates of the Caribbean. cool movie, but skip the drivein, its
very dark and was hard to see against the lowered contrast afforded by the
my observations put it somewhere on a vector from Soquel towards Morgan Hill
and Modesto, this goes quite a bit north of Hollister. Maybe south of Mt
Hamilton and north of Pacheco Pass somewhere.
- Thu, 10 Jul 2003 01:07:14 -0700 Jane Houston Jones
I was driving home from the Sonoma County Astronomical Society club
meeting at 10:00 p.m. Wednesday night. South 101 from Santa Rosa to San
Rafael. I first saw a true roman candle - a real wimp of a firework a
few moments before this. Then an amazingly bright one at 10:00 p.m. It
was definately not a firework, as it was falling down not shooting up.
I was traveling south as I said, and it was visible to my south east -
in front and to the left of me. I would have been near Santa Rosa at
10:00 p.m. I lost sight of it but it was still bright and firey as it
disappeared from view obscured by trees and low buildings to the left
of me across the freeway. I don't know if I saw the same thing, but it
was at the same time.
- Thu, 10 Jul 2003 01:45:01 -0700 (PDT) Jeffrey Crilly
ok.. we thought maybe it was late fireworks.
Up at montebello tonight (last night?) I was
standing with my back to the south-south-east,
and suddenly it got very bright - as if someone
took a flash picture - I could see shadows
in front of me. I turned around and
saw flaming stuff falling downward.
Others saw it, and assumed it was fireworks.
But with these widespread reports it sounds
more like a bolide.
This thing was bright... it cast more light
than the near-full moon!
As for location... my guess is that it was
pretty far south-south-east. Maybe even over
- Thu, 10 Jul 2003 02:39:10 -0700 Casey Fukuda
I was up at Monte Bello tonight facing south, south east just as the Bolide
lit up the sky. Jeff C or Marek C partially blocked my view of the object,
but I remember seeing their sillhouette just before it emerged from behind
them. I thought it was a flash from a camera at first, then from my view, it
appeared to break up into at least two separate pieces as it headed toward
the ground. The light streak seemed to extinguish prior to hitting the
earth. Very bright, yellow with a hint of orange.
- Thu, 10 Jul 2003 08:18:01 -0700 James Turley
About 10 last night, I was sitting in my hot tub with my kid thinking
about the gang at MB and ... FLASH to the north. My kid thought it was
some kind of firework. No streamer, but sure was bright.
- Thu, 10 Jul 2003 08:59:06 -0700 (PDT) Phil Chambers
At Montebello last night I saw it and yelled and several folks turned in
time to see parts of it. It was almost due east from Montebello.
We wrote it off as someone playing with leftover fireworks.
Maybe not... hmmmmm
- Thu, 10 Jul 2003 09:19:54 -0700 Peter McKone
I saw it from Montebello. Southeast or SSE seems right. I thought someone
from East San Jose had shot up some defective fireworks. The proximity to
July 4 seems like a clue.
By the way, the moon was very bright. Even major constellations were hard
to pick out. If you stayed home, you didn't miss too much.
- Thu, 10 Jul 2003 11:20:00 -0700 Ketan Deshpande
I usually lurk here, but ... I saw this flash too - I was driving down 101South between the 280/680 intersection and Tully, and saw it come down just to the left of the freeway, looked like it was north of the Yerba Buena/Capitol exit. It looked VERY VERY VERY close. I too thought it was a firework coming down. Didn't see anything on the news, so I didn't think much about it.
Makes that long day at work almost worth it.. ;-)
- Thu, 10 Jul 2003 18:55:14 -0700 Noel Verbiest
My wife and I were hiking in the vicinity of Montgomery Park in East San
Jose (approx. half a mile away from the Evergreen Valley College's new
We happened to be looking at this fireball almost dead on. It came down at
perhaps a 5 to 10 degree angle from the vertical. No sound.
It was due south of us, very intense, and the color changed from vivid
green (the upper 80% of the trace) to vivid yellow (the lower 20%). The
shape of the object was not a smooth disintegrating ball, it rather looked
a tortured object that burned unevenly, with certain parts of it burning
more intense then others. This was very visible during the "yellow" phase.
It did not disintegrate while it burned, but it was probably close to it.
It may have come apart after it extinguished.
It extinguished before it hit the ground.
From where we were, it looked like possible remnants could have landed in
At first we thought it were fireworks, but the trajectory and the lack of
sound were so un-firework-like that it must have been something else. The
speed of descent was not as high as what one usually sees from a meteor, it
was perhaps half that, but it was much faster then what one would expect
from fireworks. The whole event took between 1 and 2 seconds.