Winter Solstice & Eclipse!

Winter is about to arrive with a full moon and a TOTAL Lunar Eclipse! Yes, sky fans, the shortest day of the year will be celebrated with a full moon and a total lunar eclipse where the moon turns Christmas red.  It promises to be quite spectacular since the moon should be overhead and the sky will be clear (here, at least).

As the Geminid meteors are ending, the eclipse will begin about 1:30 a.m tomorrow. It will take three hours to complete the transformation, ending with the full moon turning a deep red, like an ornament in the sky. NASA will be streaming the eclipse live.  NASA reports the best viewing should occur at 3:17 a.m. (that’s early tomorrow morning).  This will give you a chance to see moon at her peak.

The last time we had a total eclipse on the solstice was 1638!!  (there is some inaccurate reporting on this — everything from 456 years to nearly a millennium. But I have gathered my data from NASA).

There will be two total lunar eclipses in 2014 (April and October) but there won’t be another full moon on the solstice with an eclipse until Dec 21, 2094.  I urge everyone to try and see this most rare event.  I will attempt some pictures and see what I can capture.  If weather is bad, remember NASA will be streaming the eclipse live.

Total Lunar Eclipse Start:  1:33 a.m.
Elapsed time: 3 hours and 38 minutes
Totality begins at 2:41 a.m and lasts 72 minutes (3:17 a.m. optimal fullness)

See you under this magical winter event as we share some historic sky!

(Happy Birthday Drahomira – this moon’s for you, babe!)


One thought on “Winter Solstice & Eclipse!

  1. Melonie McLaurin says:

    Happy Birthday, Dra. I’m sure you’ll enjoy the eclipse/solstice/full moon thing with Dra, Sherry. How neat, and rare.

    As for me, I’ll be dreaming about it. 😀

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