Right now, the advice being shared by many of those who have successfully spotted the comet is to first locate it in the sky using binoculars or a telescope. Once you’ve found it and its trademark split tail, you should be able to then track it with the naked eye.
After the comet’s closest pass by Earth on Thursday it will rise a little higher in the sky on July 24 and 25, in case you miss the actual flyby date. From that point it’s likely to get dimmer as it returns to deep space.
There’s still a slim possibility, for the most optimistic of us, that Neowise might brighten dramatically to become a so-called “great comet” that’s easily visible and spectacular to see with the naked eye. While there’s no strict definition of what a great comet is, it’s generally agreed that we haven’t seen one since Hale-Bopp.
The comet will be visible toward the northwest and western edges of the sky. A good rule of thumb is to find the big dipper and start looking below it.
Here’s where you can spot the comet over the next couple of weeks. Online resources like TheSkyLive also offer similar night sky maps to aid your comet quest.
If you don’t catch the comet before it inevitably fades away in August or sooner, you’ll have to wait awhile for its next trip through the inner solar system, currently estimated to happen in the year 8786.