Full Moon: Sunday December 3
Last Quarter: 10th
New Moon: 18th
First Quarter: 26th
Mercury is rarely easy. It is behind the Sun at the beginning of the month, and will reappear in the pre-dawn sky around December 20th, quickly getting brighter and higher in the sky. It will be great by the end of the month; high and bright. DO NOT LOOK AT THE SUN WITHOUT CERTIFIED PROTECTIVE FILTERING!
Venus Nope. Not this month.
Mars rises around in the east about 4 hours before the Sun, continuing to get brighter as the month goes on. That said, Mars is still pretty far from Earth at this time, so it will be small and will be difficult to see any surface details.
The Kingis back as a pre-dawn object rising about 2 hours before the Sun at the beginning of the month, quite bright around magnitude -1.7. As the month goes on, it will get brighter and bigger. Even with a very modest telescope, the bands and the four Gallilean moons will be visible.
Saturnis behind the Sun and not visible.
This Ice Giant is getting smaller and dimmer, but still is visible most of the night, setting around 3:30 am at the start of the month, and 1:22 am at the end of the year. It can be seen in binoculars and even seen with the naked eye in really dark skies. Noteworthy because it is very high in the sky. It hasn’t been this high since the 1960’s. This is a very faint object, very far from Earth, so if you are hunting Uranus, this would be a very good time to look for it. In a telescope it will appear as small, pale, blue-green disk, with no surface detail visible. Still you will be able to saw you saw it with your own eyes.
Pretty much everything we said about Uranus applies to Neptune, only harder. This Ice Giant is the farthest planet from the Sun, more than 30 times more distant than we are, so it appears to be very small. It sets around 11:30 at the start of the month and by 9:30 pm at the end. You will need a telescope and need to know where to look.
December 14th and 15th, especially after midnight. A good year as the moon shouldn’t be much of a factor. This can be a really good one, escpecially if you can observe away from bright lights.
December 22nd and 23rd especially later in the evening, Not a very high rate usually but sometimes it surprises us. Worth a look to be sure.