International Space Station makes Whatcom flyover

Those aboard the International Space Station sure picked the right day to fly over Whatcom County on the morning of Wednesday, Aug. 17.

There was hardly a cloud in the sky at the time, and the results were breathtaking.

ISS-Above captured the flyby, which occurred shortly before 10 am Wednesday and posted the video to Twitter, saying, “Oh Pacific Northwest! This is getting to be a bit of a habit. Clear skies again! Brilliant views over the NW corner of WA @CityofBhamWA. Then @CityofVancouver BC across the Canadian Rockies to @cityofcalgary AB.”

The 2½-minute video from the space station begins just west of the Straight of Georgia, gives a view of the San Juan Islands and moves directly over Bellingham, Mount Baker and the rest of Whatcom County before sweeping further east.

For the record, the International Space Station has been continuously occupied by crews of up to six people since November 2000, according to NASA. As of May 2, NASA reported 258 people from 20 countries had visited the International Space Station, led by 158 Americans. It is about the length of a football field, including the end zones, orbits approximately 254 miles above Earth’s surface and travels at about 17,500 mph, allows it to circle the planet approximately every 90 minutes.

Links to two live streams of views from the space station are available at

ISS-Above, which posted Wednesday’s video that included Whatcom County to Twitter, produces a single-board computer that calculates where the International Space Station is located at all times for educational and other uses and “lights up” when its passing over.

0818 Whatcom ISS.jpg
ISS-Above Courtesy to The Bellingham Herald

David Rasbach joined The Bellingham Herald in 2005 and now covers breaking news. He has been an editor and writer in several western states since 1994.


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