How many minutes of daylight left?

Telling time without a watch is just a few digits away.

You’re stranded  in urban wilderness, concrete jungle that is LA and it’s getting late in the day.  You got to get home to put those chickens up before the possums  and coons come out but you aren’t sure how many daylight hours are left.

We learned this pretty nifty trick when we were teenagers (and since I don’t wear a watch this finger trick continue comes in handy!)

To estimate hours before sundown, the only equipment you need is your hands. Extend your arms before you and bend your wrists so your palms face you. Stack one hand on top of the other from the horizon to the sun. Each finger represents approximately 15 minutes. Each person’s finger size varies, so for accurate results every time, do this at home with a watch to see if you have 10-, 15-, or 20-minute fingers.


Tell Time Without  a Clock

How to Tell Time With the Sun

Signs of the Time

Another sign of the time!  Don’t forget to enjoy the Super Harvest Moon: Autumn phenomenon is a rare treat


  1. Diane says:

    You are right about this method, and its accuracy! I was taught slightly differently – to use my fist balled up and held at arm’s length but it ends up being about the same size as your fingers lined up. I use it all the time, and it’s NEVER been wrong!

  2. Ginger says:

    Thanks for this interesting idea and book list. I’ll check them out soon. Very interesting.

  3. Heather H :) :) :) says:

    This is a great tip. I’m going to try and see how it works. It’ll come in handy since I have a watch…but I’m losing it quite often 🙂 🙂 Hugs from Oregon, Heather 🙂

  4. Bethany says:

    Wow, I never knew! This will definitely come in handy, since I don’t have a watch. 🙂

  5. Melina says:

    I would give this a try, but I have a big ol’ mountain in the way. It’s called Pikes Peak! Sun goes behind the mountain and we still have several hours of daylight. But I will give this a try sometime when I’m out on the prairie.

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