21 December 2018
The southern (or winter) solstice will occur in Pittsburgh this evening at 5:23pm. By then we’ll have lived through a very short day, 9 hours and 17 minutes of rainy gloomy overcast daylight.
If we were in Manchester, UK there would be even less daylight. Today they have rainy overcast skies too, but they also have fewer hours daylight, 7 hours 28 minutes. The flip side is that Manchester has more sunlight in June.
Scott Richards decided to compare both solstices in Manchester side by side. He filmed the entire day — sunrise to sunset — on June 21 and December 21, then sped up the film so we don’t have to watch for 20 hours. Instead it lasts six minutes.
I’ve started his video, above, near sunset on the winter solstice (right) side. If you watch for a minute you’ll see the moon rise in winter while the summer sun is still so high that it leaves the video frame.
There’s a dramatic difference in the amount of daylight from solstice to solstice. No wonder I feel sleepy in December.
(video by Scott Richards on YouTube)