Super-Harvest Blood Moon
Last month we were treated with a clear sky during the Super-Harvest Blood Moon. If you live in the Pacific Northwest, you know that both of these events are rare. (To explain what a Super-Harvest Blood Moon is I’m going to get a little technical. So, if you feel your eyes rolling towards the back of your head, please skip to the next paragraph before you pass out.) As you know, there is a full moon every month. A supermoon is a full moon that coincides with perigee, which is the point when the moon’s orbit comes closest to Earth. (A supermoon can appear 14% larger and 30% brighter than a regular full moon.) A total lunar eclipse is when the Earth is positioned directly between the sun and the moon. When this happens the moon becomes a reddish hue, called a “blood moon“. (Get ready, I’m going to really geek out.) The reddish hue is caused by the sun’s light being bent through the Earth’s atmosphere and the shorter wavelengths of visible light (purple, blue, and green) are absorbed by the Earth’s atmosphere leaving only the longer red wavelengths visible, and therefore, causing the moon to turn a reddish hue. A Harvest Moon is when a full moon occurs closest to the autumnal equinox, or beginning of Fall. Now, combine a supermoon, total lunar eclipse, and a Harvest Moon and you get the Super-Harvest Blood Moon. Whew, you made it.
As I was walking down the beach to get in position for the special event, I noticed the sunset reflecting on the wet sand. With amazing shades of pink and blue, I quickly took this shot before the reflection was gone.
Then, about 45 minutes later, the moon was visible over the tree tops.
And…, just to give you an idea of how rare a Super-Harvest Blood Moon is, it hasn’t taken place since 1982 and won’t happen again until 2033.