This would have been a sight to see!
On Monday night, Feb. 23-24, sky watchers in the western half of North America witnessed a spectacular cluster of fireballs and meteors. We now know it was the re-entry and breakup of a Chinese rocket body, specifically stage 3 of the CZ-4B rocket that launched the Yaogan Weixing 26 satellite in Dec. 2014. Donny Mott photographed the glowing debris from Spirit Lake, Idaho.
Mott was watching a display of auroras around 10 pm local time when the fragments flew by. “It was super bright,” he says. “You can see it breaking up in these 4 images I took 10 seconds apart.”
Another photographer, John Arnold, caught the meteor flying over Craig, Montana: photos.
According to satellite tracking expert Ted Molczan, “there are confirmed sightings from Arizona, Utah, Nevada, Wyoming, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Montana, British Columbia, Alberta. The most southerly observation I have noted so far was from Scottsdale, Arizona; the most northerly from Didsbury, Alberta. That spans nearly 3000 km of the descent.” Molczan has prepared a map of sightings along with the ground track of the decaying rocket body.