Mars enters the evening sky tonight, here's how to find the Red Planet

software map of mars in august 14, 2022 sky
A diagram of the night sky as it will appear on Aug. 14, 2022. (Image credit: Starry Night Software)

The Red Planet is finally rising before midnight.

Mars will start showing up in the evening sky Saturday (Aug. 13), although finding it will be tough for the first few days. The upshot, however, is that Jupiter, Saturn and Uranus are still pretty visible during various parts of the dark-sky hours.

Mars will be quite low on the eastern horizon, becoming more visible a few minutes after midnight local time. Luckily, it's hard to miss that planet, given it glows so red in the dark. 

Handily, it won't be too far from the Pleiades, the name the International Astronomical Union assigns to a cluster of shiny stars in the constellation Taurus. (Your tradition may have other names for these various astronomical objects.)

Related: Best stargazing tents: keep warm and dry when skywatching


Celestron Astro Fi 102

(Image credit: Celestron)

Looking for a telescope for the next stargazing event? We recommend the Celestron Astro Fi 102 as the top pick in our best beginner's telescope guide.   

Your view of the home of the Perseverance rover will be enhanced if you have binoculars or a low-power telescope, but Mars still looks great with the naked eye. Mars will continue to brighten throughout August, in fact, moving from +0.20 magnitude to a more brilliant -0.12, according to our August 2022 skywatching guide.

Uranus is steadily rising earlier, becoming visible in binoculars or telescopes at 10:20 p.m. local time by month's end, while evening-sky and brilliant Jupiter is getting ready for a close encounter with the moon you can spot with the naked eye Sunday (Aug. 14). Saturn, meanwhile, is reaching opposition and visible all night.

If you're looking for a telescope or binoculars with which to watch Mars, go to our guides for the best binoculars deals and the best telescope deals now. Our best cameras for astrophotography and best lenses for astrophotography can also help you prepare for the next skywatching sight on your own. 

Follow Elizabeth Howell on Twitter @howellspace. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom or on Facebook.

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Elizabeth Howell
Staff Writer, Spaceflight

Elizabeth Howell (she/her), Ph.D., is a staff writer in the spaceflight channel since 2022 covering diversity, education and gaming as well. She was contributing writer for for 10 years before joining full-time. Elizabeth's reporting includes multiple exclusives with the White House and Office of the Vice-President of the United States, an exclusive conversation with aspiring space tourist (and NSYNC bassist) Lance Bass, speaking several times with the International Space Station, witnessing five human spaceflight launches on two continents, flying parabolic, working inside a spacesuit, and participating in a simulated Mars mission. Her latest book, "Why Am I Taller?", is co-written with astronaut Dave Williams. Elizabeth holds a Ph.D. and M.Sc. in Space Studies from the University of North Dakota, a Bachelor of Journalism from Canada's Carleton University and a Bachelor of History from Canada's Athabasca University. Elizabeth is also a post-secondary instructor in communications and science at several institutions since 2015; her experience includes developing and teaching an astronomy course at Canada's Algonquin College (with Indigenous content as well) to more than 1,000 students since 2020. Elizabeth first got interested in space after watching the movie Apollo 13 in 1996, and still wants to be an astronaut someday. Mastodon: