It was July 4th, but I still didn't expect so many explosions. Due to crowd restrictions, all the public fireworks displays in our area were canceled, and most of them have been rescheduled for Labor Day. With no plans for the evening, we decided to take advantage of a clear, warm summer night and go…Read more Paddling Under A Full Moon
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…Read more Mars and the Moon
I've been meaning to write about this for a while now, but things keep me busy, as they do, and now it's almost too late, because this event happens TOMORROW AT DAWN!! Tomorrow, the Moon will slide directly between Earth and the planet Mars, causing an eclipse, of sorts. This type of event is called…Read more Watch the Moon Block Mars – Feb 18, 2020
Happy Father's Day all! A least to all the fathers out there. I haven't been sharing any astronomical thoughts for a while, as I've been too busy being a dad, myself. But despite my lack of writing, I've consistently been looking up. Enough to notice that Mars has slipped away and almost disappeared into the…Read more Opposition (Astronomy, Week of 6/16/19)
Cold, and windy, but mostly clear - just some high cirrus passing by every once in a while to give the Moon a hazy halo. I tried to capture a timelapse of the whole event - that's being processed and hopefully comes out well. In the meantime, here's a montage of the eclipse as viewed…Read more Super (Cold) Blood Wolf Moon
Tonight's the night! The much-hyped Super Blood Wolf Moon (aka total lunar eclipse, in January, while the Moon is at perigee) is visible tonight from both Americas. Western viewers get to see it in the evening, while Eastern viewers have to stay up a little later, but see totality when the Moon is at its…Read more Lunar-tic
Wow, there's a lot of cool stuff going on in the night sky this week. I can't wait til this pattern of East Coast thunderstorms lets me see it! Let me give a quick rundown, in the order of my own particular interest and excitement. Your mileage may vary. Mars at Opposition Mars is back,…Read more The Moon, Mars, a Comet, and Maybe a Fireball (Astronomy: Week of 7/22/18)
As a quick followup to my post last week about Mercury being at elongation (that was back on Thursday, July 12) - I failed to mention, because I didn't know, that the brand new baby moon would be right next to Mercury on Saturday night (the 14th). Here's what I saw: Mercury is actually fairly…Read more Mercury and the Moon
Around here, meteorologically at least, spring has been sort of hard to get a grip on. We've gone from weeks of rain (very spring-y), to cold dreary late-winter holdouts interspersed with days of mid-summer 90-degree temps and high humidity. It's been a confusing time -- and so it's hard to really get a grip on…Read more Summer?
As twilight ended on March 18, we could see our entire inner solar system in one shot: The Earth, Moon, Venus, and Mercury (left to right).
So... It's an interesting conjunction of coincidental (and a bit arbitrary) alignments we'll see this week: a Super Moon (Moon at perigee - closest point to Earth - while full); a Blue Moon (arbitrary, second full Moon in January. Seriously, we made this up.); a Cold Moon (again, just the name we give the full…Read more Super Blue Cold Blood Moon – Salt in the Wound! (Astronomy: Week of 1/28/18)
The first full Moon of 2018 was a Supermoon, and also the Wolf Moon. Here, the visible ragged crater edges on the western (top) flank indicate this is no longer full - it's technically a waning gibbous. But it's in the single digits out there, I wouldn't be surprised if the wolves are still about!
OK, so... there might be a little bit of exaggeration in this title, but not much! Let's get to it! First off, we'll be ringing in the New Year with the year's first Supermoon, on New Year's Day! It's bigger, it's brighter! Because it's closer... the full Moon just happen to occur within a day…Read more Super-Everything to Kick Off 2018! (Astronomy: Week of 12/31/17)
Welcome to December, everybody! It's hard to believe it's already December, and that 2017 is almost over... but here we are. I'm posting my weekly backyard astronomy thoughts a day early this week, because I don't want you to miss the gloriously big, last (and only) Supermoon of the year, tonight, Dec 2. Now, the…Read more The Moon! The Sun! The Meteors! (Astronomy: Week of 12/3/17)
This week I've been able to get out and just look at the sky. The clouds have broken, for a while, and those crisp, clear low-humidity night skies are back. It sure is getting cold, though! Saturn and Mercury are toying with the setting Sun. Jupiter and Mars are in the morning sky, and Venus…Read more Just Stargazing, and Wondering (Astronomy: Week of 11/26/17)