January 20th, 2019, 08:00 p.m. local time
Cold. It was really, really cold.
It was near zero (Fahrenheit). Fortunately there wasn’t much wind.
And there happened to be a total lunar eclipse here in North America yesterday. The weather has been terrible for a long time, the reason why I have not posted for so long, but remarkably we had a window where the sky was totally clear, at the price of sub-frigid temperatures. Of this I was glad, for I can wear as many layers of clothing as I like, but I can’t do much to poke a hole through the clouds.
I learned some lessons from last year’s partial lunar eclipse. Chief among those was that the telescope in these temperatures is more hassle than it’s worth when it comes to the Moon. My digital camera on tripod was more than sufficient for these conditions, at a slight loss of detail in the final images. I used my longest stock lens.
Like last year’s partial, the Moon began to form an “unnatural” crescent, and yet unlike last year’s there then formed a reddish hue as it reached totality. The Moon was never fully unlit from where I was, as there was always a sliver of bright sunlight as the very edge.
From the first set of pictures I took of the Full Moon around 7:30 p.m. Central Time:
After 8:50 pm. the shadow formed:
After totality, the shadow rescinded from the West (looking above):
All in all, a great experience, I just wish it had been a little warmer.
Even though I have not posted here the past few months, I have been looking towards the sky as much as I could, either via naked eye observation or with my binoculars. I look forward to the warmer months ahead; Jupiter’s return to the evening sky is a mere few months away! Also, I STILL have to get to post-processing my Mars opposition photos. Hopefully before Spring!