Question: Have you ever seen Santa’s flying sleigh with your telescope? — VO, New York, NY
Answer: I’m not positive, but I think I did see it once, many years ago, sometime in the early 1970’s. I had my camera attached to the telescope that night, and was taking photos of the Full Moon. Suddenly, this UFO passed right in front of the Moon. I managed to get only one quick shot, reproduced above.
I call it a “UFO” since it was a “flying object,” but I couldn’t positively “identify” it — it was moving too fast and got blurred in my photo. You can definitely see something that might be a sleigh moving past the lower edge of the Moon. But it could also be a flock of birds, or maybe even some weird shaped cloud.
Santa’s sleigh is not an easy thing to see for several reasons. First and foremost, it has no flashing lights, like all other aircraft are required to have by FAA regulations. Second, it’s not that large an object, even with 8 or 9 reindeer attached. Third, he only flies one night every year, and the night sky in December is often cloudy.