Stand by for a “super blue blood moon”

I had no idea that such a combination was possible, but according to the Telegraph, it is.

Falling on January 31, it will be the product of three different phenomena, each of which would be exciting enough on their own.

Not only will it be a blue moon – the name given to the second full moon in one calendar month – it will also be a supermoon; this occurs when a full moon is at the point in its orbit closest to Earth, making it appear larger and brighter.

However that’s not all: it will also be a blood moon in some areas of the world. A blood moon happens when the shadow of Earth casts a reddish glow on the moon.

Stargazers in Australia, New Zealand, central and eastern Asia, Indonesia, Alaska, Hawaii and parts of North America will be able to see the super blue blood moon, if the skies are clear … It will be the first time a ‘super blue blood moon’ has graced the skies in 152 years, with the last one falling on March 31, 1866.

There’s more at the link.

If you’d like to watch it, NASA has some advice.

NASA says viewing the eclipse may be challenging in the eastern time zone, with the best viewing in the western U.S.

“The eclipse begins at 5:51 AM ET, as the Moon is about to set in the western sky, and the sky is getting lighter in the east,” said Gordon Johnston, program executive and lunar blogger at NASA Headquarters in Washington.

The Moon will enter the outer part of Earth’s shadow at 5:51 a.m. EST, but it reportedly won’t be all that noticeable. The darker part of Earth’s shadow will begin to blanket part of the Moon with a reddish tint at 6:48 a.m. EST, but the Moon will set less than a half-hour later, according to NASA.

“So your best opportunity if you live in the East is to head outside about 6:45 a.m. and get to a high place to watch the start of the eclipse—make sure you have a clear line of sight to the horizon in the west-northwest, opposite from where the Sun will rise,” said Johnston.

Again, more at the link, including a diagram of what will happen, when.

If you’d like to know more about the various names given to different phases and/or perspectives on the moon, see here.



  1. "I see a blood moon a risin'
    "I see trouble 'round the bend…" (with apologies to CCR)

    And lots of the usual end-of-the-world sorts popping out of the woodwork.


  2. If I can get up early enough, and if the weather will oblige, this could be interesting.
    Just have to go a mile or two down the road for a clear view. Thanks for the heads up!

  3. Just stand on the street corner early in the morning watching the moon
    …the a cop car rolls up on you and the officer does a "Terry stop" on you, as you "look suspicious" just standing around on the street randomly looking around.

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