Reports Report 3956ab (Event 3956-2017)

Name Robert I
Experience Level 2/5
Remarks The fireball that I saw last night was bright and had similar characteristics as a bottle rocket. I thought that was what it was until I realized that it was traveling too fast and falling in too straight a trajectory toward the horizon to be that. It was an extremely clear and starry night and I'm used to seeing shooting stars and satellites passing in the sky, so I have a good idea about what is normal in this sphere. I live in a densely wooded and lightly populated area of the Catskill Mountain Park, so it was easy to quickly determine that there were no neighbors in the vicinity that could have launched a bottle rocket that could have followed the same trajectory. What made the incident memorable was the fact that I was convinced it was a firework at first and felt a chill when I figured out that it could not have been and I had just seen something out of the norm. I texted my wife, who was in the city, about what I had seen soon after the experience. I saw a similar fireball in the early seventies when I lived in South-East England. That fireball was much larger and seemed to move slower with a much longer period of visibility. It was seen by many hundreds of people and, according to the newspapers at the time, was tracked by radar across the Atlantic Ocean to a point where it disappeared off the coast of Greenland. I mention this because the event I saw last night, though faster to pass and smaller, had very similar characteristics of color and motion. Viewing the fireball last night also had same emotional effect on me that had I felt in the seventies: that I had just experienced something unusual and "other worldly."
Address West Kill, NY
Latitude 42° 11' 37.33'' N (42.193703°)
Longitude 74° 19' 12.78'' W (-74.320218°)
Elevation 552.429m
Time and Duration
Local Date & Time 2017-10-24 22:35 EDT
UT Date & Time 2017-10-25 02:35 UT
Duration ≈3.5s
Moving direction From up right to down left
Descent Angle 203°
Facing azimuth 2.68°
First azimuth -
First elevation 33°
Last azimuth -
Last elevation
Brightness and color
Stellar Magnitude -13
Color Green, Red
Concurrent Sound
Observation Yes
Remarks Heard a hissing, "shhh" sound. Looked and sounded like a bottle rocket, though not as loud.
Delayed Sound
Observation No
Remarks -
Persistent train
Observation No
Duration -
Length -
Remarks -
Terminal flash
Observation No
Remarks -
Observation Yes
Remarks Predominantly green fireball with some red and other colored elements was closely followed by a second meteor that was white/cream in color. This was travelling in the exact same direction and at the same pace, but at a trajectory that was slightly lower than the main fireball.