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First lunar eclipse of the year dazzles sky watchers across the bay area

April 14, 2014 lunar eclipse brought numerous people out of their homes to watch brief moments of blood red solar eclipse caused by the reflection from the Earth onto the lunar surface. The lunar eclipse started just one minute before 11:00 pm on April 14 and ended around 1:00 am on April 15.

The total eclipse of the moon is seen when the final stage of the lunar surface enters the umbra, or dark central shadow of the Earth.
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There were also a number of sky watchers who drove to the highest points around town to catch a glimpse of the corona encircling the lunar surface. While others found a more secluded area to watch to the event. Denise Miller and her son Ryan had gone out to catch up on errands, but ended up watching the lunar eclipse from a small park near the Campus of Evergreen Valley College.

Denise said, I was reading through and next thing I knew we went to the park and waited. Denise was using her smart phone to browse the web while she and her son headed out to finish up some errands for the day. And that’s when they began to notice the moon was changing. “We just live down the street,” Ryan said. “So it was easy for us to just park here and watch”.

Ryan had just gone sky diving on Saturday, which made seeing the lunar experience more meaningful. “It is pretty exciting to see the transformation of the moon,” Ryan said. After watching for about an hour “I would absolutely do it again.” Despite its aspect of being a "blood red" moon. Light pollution and cloud coverage kept people from seeing the blood red color which gives it its name.

After focusing a camera on the lunar eclipse it became clear that the diffusion from the Earth’s atmosphere had kept earth bound viewers from seeing the natural event through the naked eye. However, using a wide range telescope or binoculars would have allowed the user a better quality view of the lunar event.

“This was the first time for me to see it after 49 years,” Denise said. There was one thing however that they both agreed on. It was a couple of hours well spent.

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