Lunar eclipse (on Winter Solstice!)

Lunar eclipse!!!

Remember that lunar eclipse I was talking about? The one that was on the solstice for the first time in a long long time? I got up at 3am to see it! So for those of you who were sensible and in bed, here’s what it looked like!

…I’ll admit this doesn’t seem that impressive in photos. I mean, who cares about a silly-colored moon?…

Blue moon, you saw me standing alone Fuschia moon, too! The moon is made of green cheese, right?


…but it is actually really cool to see in person.

But why is it red? Here’s what Wikipedia has to say on the matter:

The Moon does not completely disappear… because of the refraction of sunlight by the Earth’s atmosphere into the shadow cone; if the Earth had no atmosphere, the Moon would be completely dark during an eclipse. The red coloring arises because sunlight reaching the Moon must pass through a long and dense layer of the Earth’s atmosphere, where it is scattered. Shorter wavelengths are more likely to be scattered by the air molecules and the small particles, and so by the time the light has passed through the atmosphere, the longer wavelengths dominate. This resulting light we perceive as red. This is the same effect that causes sunsets and sunrises to turn the sky a reddish color.

Isn’t that neat!

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13 Responses to “Lunar eclipse (on Winter Solstice!)”

  1. nice shot, I wasnt about to get up, thanks for doing it for me. lol.

  2. I was out this morning hoping for a lunar eclipse photo but it was too cloudy.

  3. Gorgeous shot! In our neck of the woods it was too cloudy and we missed it all together. Thanks for sharing your image with those of us that were not lucky enough to see it ourselves!

  4. I thought that i would go out if I woke during the night but I slept right through it. Great shot!

  5. Thank you! I initially thought it was too cloudy here, too… but then realized I was looking in the wrong direction. Whoops.

    Hopefully, I’ll catch up on sleep sometime in the new year! 😀

  6. 85 today, not normal, lol. Its going to be in the 40s by Christmas day.

  7. I stayed up to see it (though I nearly missed it and luckily got a reminder). I totally did not get enough sleep before having to wake up again for work, but it was worth it. My attempts at photos were similar to yours (not surprising, given our similar cameras), and serve as vague proof that “I was there.” The view with the naked eye (well, possibly lens-corrected, but you know what I mean) was something special. I stayed up to see some of the eclipse recede, until maybe a quarter of the top part of the moon was full brightness. Lots of fun. Cold, cold fun.

    • Hah! So you can commiserate with me on trying to operate a camera in 20-degree weather! With bare hands, a lame-ass manual focus, and no tripod (which I really, really needed for a decent shot). And doing all this while half-asleep. 🙂

      I was out towards the end, too, but not long enough to see any of the full brightness. I wanted to try to get another hour of sleep before I had to get up for work.

  8. Oh, I agree that it was beautiful to see in person!


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