Blood moon rising II: The sequel

Early Wednesday morning watchers of the night sky will be able to witness the second “blood moon” of the year (the last one was on April 15). A “blood moon” happens during a total lunar eclipse. Light from the sun, which mostly is blocked by the earth, bends through our planet’s atmosphere. Particles, such as dust and smoke, give the light an eerie red glow as it passes through the air, which illuminates the moon with the same hue. The level of color saturation depends upon the amount of the pollution in the atmosphere.

There will be two other total eclipses next year (April 4 and Sept. 28) over most of North America except for the west coast. The next one we’ll be able to see in California will be on Jan. 31, 2018.

As I said, all this will happen early in the morning, very early. According to National Geographic.com, the partial eclipse starts at 2:15 a.m., but doesn’t reach its totality until almost 3:30 a.m. The moon should be ending the full eclipse at nearly 4:30 and it should all over and done with by around 5:30 in the morning. So if you’re an early riser or want to pull an all-nighter this celestial event is for you.

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