Venus Countdown

A week Tuesday Venus will transit across the sun for the second and last time this century. For those in North America it will happen on June 5 at sunset. Through the rest of the world, save for South America and western Africa that will not see the transit, it will take place on June 6 either at sunrise or during the day depending on your location (see the bellow map for details).

Visibilty of the transit of Venus for 2012 (Image from NASA)

As with a solar eclipse, you will need proper eye protection to watch the transit of Venus. Solar eclipse glasses or #14 welder’s goggles (no other number will do) will work great for the transit, but if you can watch it through a telescope or binoculars with a proper solar filter you will benefit from being able to see things up close. In Winnipeg you can purchase solar eclipse glasses from The Manitoba Museum Shop for $2 each.

When choosing a location to see the transit, make sure to find a location with a clear view of the western horizon. If you can scout out the location a couple days before the transit to check the path of the sun and find a good viewing location.

If you are unfortunate enough to b in a location that won’t be in view of the transit, you can watch it on NASA TV. In Manitoba if you don’t have a pair of solar glasses or access to a filtered telescope you can watch the transit take place on Shaw TV, who will be broadcasting the transit with The Manitoba Museum.

The path of Venus across the Sun (Image from NASA)


Transit Times For Select Cities in Canada

Contact I

(Ingress Beings)

Contact II

(Ingress Ends)


Victoria 15:05:43 PDT 15:23:17 21:11
Calgary 16:05:23 MDT 16:22:58 21:46
Edmonton 16:05:17 MDT 16:22:51 21:58
Yellowknife* 16:05:06 MDT 16:22:40 23:22
Regina 16:04:57 CST 16:22:32 21:05
Winnipeg 17:04:36 CDT 17:22:12 21:32
Toronto 18:03:56 EDT 18:21:35 20:55
Ottawa 18:03:47 EDT 18:21:25 20:47
Montreal 18:03:42 EDT 18:21:21 20:39
Halifax 19:03:25 ADT 19:21:05 20:56
St John’s 19:33:11 NDT 19:50:53 20:54

*Yellowknife will see the whole transit. Egress starts (Contact III) at 22:32 and ends (Contact IV) at 22:49.

You can also check with your local chapter of the RASC to see if there will be public viewings near you.