Right Steps & Poui Trees


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The Longest Partial Lunar Eclipse in Centuries

I love gazing up into the night sky, so when I read that the longest partial lunar eclipse in centuries would be taking place between Thursday night and Friday morning, I set my alarm to wake up so that I could take a look.

And it was beautiful! The moon was a deep orangey-red at the time I was looking at it, similar in colour to a moon in full eclipse I watched a couple of years ago. The sky was almost cloudless and gave a clear view of the moon.

My attempts at photographing what I saw were stunningly unsuccessful, however. My phone camera doesn’t do well with night shots and this was the best I managed with it:

And my camera has developed an internal twitch that needs repairing and so wasn’t much use either:

No good saying, “Next time!” as the next time there is a partial lunar eclipse this long will be on February 8, 2669. Though there will be one two minutes shorter on November 30, 2039.

I had much better luck with the Super Blood Wolf Moon in January 2019. It will have to do….

If you’d like to see some photos of the eclipse from Friday morning, you could take a look here.


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350 Words Or Less: Why I Prefer Lunar Eclipses

I just wasn’t feeling the excitement about the solar eclipse, which is unusual for me, as I really do enjoy these scientific, nerdy things. So I didn’t do any preparation for it. This morning, however, I heard some discussion on the radio and I thought, okay, let me take a look. I checked online for times…

Then, having been reminded of the dangers of looking directly at the sun during the eclipse, I thought about the various methods of viewing without damaging my eyes. When I was a child, they used to say you could look through a photo negative, but in these days of digital photography, that was not an easy option. I took a pan of water out into the front yard and tried to look at the sun’s shadow in it, but that wasn’t successful.

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Then I used two index cards, one with a pinhole in it. Success! My daughter Kimberley was kind enough to come and hold the cards for me, while I took photos:solar eclipse 21-8-17 aAnd there on the lower card was the shadow of the partially covered sun:P1200616

Since we had only a partial eclipse, we didn’t have complete darkness, but it did get noticeably less bright. My dogs did act strangely, but that was because they didn’t know why I was lugging a pan of water around the yard and not letting them drink from it.

I prefer lunar eclipses. You don’t have to worry about searing your retinas by looking up at the eclipse. You don’t have to do any special preparation or acquire or construct any special equipment. You just go out at the right time and stare up at the night sky. And you can easily take photos of the moon. Simplicity.

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