The brightest planets in January’s night sky: How to see them (and when)

The new year begins with four of the five naked-eye planets strung out along a crooked diagonal line measuring nearly 40 degrees above the south-southwest horizon an hour after sunset. 

Your clenched fist held at arm’s length measures 10 degrees, so these four planets — in this order: Venus, Mercury, Saturn and Jupiter — will span an area measuring roughly “four fists” on the first evening of 2022.