There’s My Eclipse!

We did not get completely skunked!  Despite the forecast for heavy clouds, peaking around the time of eclipse totality, I went out to the desert and got set up before dark.  It was very cloudy then, and a bit windy.  As it was getting dark I got some interesting shots of the pre-eclipse Moon (thinking that this might be ALL that I would get):

I had set up at the same spot as the earlier picture of dinosaur sculptures, thinking that I might be able to use them as foreground to some lunar eclipse photos, but it worked pretty well long before the eclipse.  And this got me to thinking that a full Moon through clouds can be pretty dramatic:

But the “main event” was still looking unlikely, which was particularly unfortunate because some friends and family were coming to watch the eclipse with me.  When Earth’s shadow began eating away the bottom edge of the Moon it was hard to be sure whether it was Earth’s shadow or just some clouds.  The clouds were definitely thinning, and I was able to get the mount polar aligned when Polaris finally became visible.

I had a DSLR set up on a fixed tripod in addition to the telescope, but didn’t get any decent eclipse images with it.  In the first half the high clouds made the Moon very hazy.  In the second half the sky cleared, but the wind was fierce, and the little tripod was not up to the task.

Toward the end of totality the sky finally became very clear.  At the same time, I was having trouble keeping things from blowing away, including my laptop computer!  The above image was captured during this time.  It might not be the best of the bunch, and I can probably improve it by stacking a few shots taken close together, but this is it, for now.

I hope you got to see the eclipse – with or without clouds and wind!


About Greg Marshall

I am a retired electronics engineer and after a few months of enjoying my leisure I began to miss doing product development. My astronomy hobby always needed new solutions to unique problems, so I decided that whenever I came up with a good solution I would try to make it available to others.

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