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43rd PARALLEL

(43 degrees north latitude)

COUNTRIES: United States, Canada, Spain, France, Italy,Croatia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia, Kosovo, Bulgaria, Russia, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, China, North Korea, Japan.

This sign straddles the 43 degree north latitude line. As you read this sign, you are facing due east.

Latitude lines are approximately 70 miles apart from one another.

At this location, you are actually closer to the equator than you are to the North Pole.

The 43 degree north latitude line runs through 11 states and one province.

The 43 degree north latitude line runs through 20 countries.

The North Star and Latitude

The North Star is also known as Polaris. Polaris stays in one spot in the sky while the other stars seem to rotate around it. This is a result of the Earth's rotation on its axis.

Polaris can be a useful tool for determining latitude in the Northern Hemisphere. At the North Pole, Polaris is at zenith, 90 degrees above the horizon. At the equator, Polaris is 0 degrees above the horizon.

For every degree of latitude that one moves toward the North Pole, Polaris shifts one degree higher in the sky.

From the 43 degree north latitude line, the elevation of Polaris above the horizon is 43 degrees. It doesn't matter what time of day it is, Polaris is always in the same position in the sky.

Polaris is virtually impossible to see during the day, but it is still there.

The precise location of this sign is 43 0' 0" N, 82 25' 28.6" W.