Sunday, December 11, 2011

DEC'11 Lunar Eclipse

What a great way to close out the observational year! I was very fortunate to have excellent viewing conditions and a easy to get to location to see this show - right on my driveway!

I was out the door at 4:15 a.m and I was able to spy the faint penumbrae "gray dusting" with my naked eye - easy with our very dry air conditions! Shades of gray on top of shades of grey.

First contact of the umbra is a highlight for me and right on time it shows itself kissing the lunar western frontier! Could it be because my street name is "Umbria Court" that I love this stuff so much?

As the shadow sojourned across Tom shows up to enjoy the unfolding shadow show. He joined me last year at this time for the previous total lunar eclipse. The cold and hour did not deter him from hanging out with the SUG, having some of his nitro coffee, and listening to my roaming commentary. Tom made good observes watching lunar features brighten and fade as totality came upon us. He really enjoyed the crater Tyco show that you can see in the pics!

AT 104 was the perfect scope for this outing with his sharp optics. The colors were absolutely vivid!

Here are keys to a successful early morning and very cool temperature Lunar Eclipse observe : Hot stick to your ribs SUGO Chicken Paprikash & Pasta the night before and nitro coffee! Bliss!

And of course a ruddy moon with shades of red, orange, brown and rust to color my western morning sky. By a stroke of celestial geometry I was just able to catch the end of totality on my nearby foothill with the binoculars with Luna a mere 5 degrees above the horizon shaded by morning haze in the distance. Not be left out Mrs.SUG joined me right at this minute and caught the still eclipsed moon as it kissed the western horizon. Impressed she was with this sublime view and her spouses fervor and tenacity to view all things cosmic!


Pembrokeshire Astronomer said...

Excellent picture SUG, the colouring reminds me of the Total Eclipse of the 9th of December 1992... :0)

I have to mention the Chicken Paprikash & Pasta.....Looks yummy!!!
Oh my am I hungry now...

Wonderful food...... Beautiful red Moon...Perfect combination.. :0)

Johany said...

I want some Chicken Parikash and pasta!!! It looks so good!!!

Paulie said...

Glad you got to see all the way through totality. I had about 15 of the beginning of partial phase, and was quite happy with it. We won't see another total eclipse until April 14-15, 2014. We do, however, get to see another partial eclipse the morning of June 4, about 36 hours before the start of the Venus transit. That will be an interesting week.

I second the previous comments. Chicken Paprikash and coffee would have went well with my eclipse observing.

Sidewalk Universe said...

Hey blog pals! I wish you all would have had a chance to see this one.

Johany consider this post a HEOC OK - just for you!

Paulie I am glad you got to see some... this shows your continual zeal to observe! I badly wanted to heat the leftovers at 4a.m but settled for some raisin toast and jam instead with the nitro joe.

I forgot to mention in the post that Tom kept seeing early Geminids in our western sky! He'd see them I was missing them!!!!!!!!!!

Paulie said...

I saw a late Geminid last Friday. It was a real fireball, right over Adler. To shine as bright as it did through the worst of the city lighting, it had to have been just about the brightest meteor I've ever seen.