I’m interested in finding the North Star on clear nights. I know it has something to do with the Big Dipper. What is the relationship?
The North Star, Polaris, lies directly over the North Pole. You can find it by tracing a line through the two “pointer” stars, Merak and Dubhe, which mark the side of the cup portion (opposite the handle) of the familiar Big Dipper, and continuing it straight across the sky to the next bright star. That’s about the distance from your outstretched thumb to middle finger, held at arm’s length.