This morning, the Moon passed in front of the planet Mars.  My view of the event from the east coast of the US was entirely daylight, and I wasn’t sure I’d be able to resolve anything.

I was up around 6:30am, and the sky was mostly clear.  I stepped out on the back deck and took a couple quick photos of the Moon with the telephoto lens.  6:44am.  The Sun was just rising, and the sky was already very blue, bright enough so that Mars was invisible to the naked eye – so I just took some hopeful shots, about 43 minutes before it was to disappear.  Then I went back inside to take a shower and get ready for work.

After my shower, the sky was covered with a patchwork of fast-moving wispy clouds that matched the color of the crescent Moon almost exactly.  I pulled out the telescope, and started trying to line things up – but it was frustrating, as I couldn’t see ANYTHING against the field of blue and white.  I’d pull my eye off the scope and look up – clouds everywhere… oh, there’s the Moon coming back out again.  Back to the telescope…

And then FINALLY, a good, zoomed in shot of the Moon’s eastern limb.  Just then, my wife, standing beside me, said “My watch shows 7:28”.  One minute too late… sure enough, no Mars…

I took the kids to school and went to work.  By 8:30 the skies were completely overcast, no hope of seeing a reappearance.  But just in case, I went back and examined those earlier shots from the back deck.

DSC_0241

The Moon is sliding left, and will pass in front of Mars in about 43 minutes.  Unedited (except cropping) photo taken Feb 18,2020, 11:44 UTC (6:44 am Local)

What do you know?  I DID catch Mars!!

Get Out There
Troy
http://www.flying-squirrel.org

5 thoughts on “Mars and the Moon

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