Black Press reader Michael White captured this image of a lunar eclipse last year. (Michael White photo)

B.C. residents might be able to a glimpse of the ‘super blood wolf moon’

It will be the only total lunar eclipse to reach B.C. eyes this year

B.C. residents will only get one opportunity to witness an eclipse in 2019, so mark your calendars for Jan. 20 to catch a lunar eclipse and “super blood wolf moon”.

Astronomer Ken Tapping, who works out of the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory (DRAO), broke down when exactly our eyes should be on the sky that evening.

“At 6:36 p.m., we’ll see the moon start to darken as it moves into the outer shadow of the Earth. Then at 7:34 p.m., it will start to move into the inner shadow, so at that point we’ll start to see the shadow of the edge of the Earth moving across the lunar disc slowly,” said Tapping. “At 8:41 p.m., the moon will be completely covered – completely immersed in the Earth’s shadow. The middle of the eclipse is at 9:12 p.m. and at 9:43 we will see the moon start to move out of the shadow.”

Tapping continued that at 10:50 p.m., the moon will be completely out of the Earth’s inner shadow, with the eclipse officially ending at 11:48 p.m. when the moon exits the outer shadow. He said residents shouldn’t be surprised that the eclipse will last for nearly five hours.

“The Earth casts a fairly large shadow, as opposed to when we’re looking at the shadow of the moon on the Earth for eclipses of the Sun – that casts a very small shadow,” said Tapping.

Also unlike a solar eclipse, residents do not need to avert their gaze from the moon during the eclipse or use visionary aids to watch the eclipse take place. Tapping said a “super blood wolf moon”, which is when the moon appears red, can take place during this eclipse depending on how clean the atmosphere is.

“If you were standing on the moon in the middle of the eclipse looking at the Earth, you wouldn’t see the Sun because the Earth would be blocking it. What you would see is a ring of red around the Earth, which is essentially the sunset colour of the Sun shining through the atmosphere, then being refracted onto the moon,” said Tapping. “So the light that will be shining on the moon is red because of the Earth’s atmosphere, so if the atmosphere is nice and clean then you get a lovely bronze or blood-coloured moon. If there’s a lot of pollution, the moon will look darker and more grey.”

Tapping said this is the only eclipse in 2019 we will have the pleasure of seeing from B.C. and North America in general.

“There will be a solar eclipse on Jan. 6, which will only be visible in Asia. There’s a total solar eclipse on July 2, visible only from the South Pacific and South America,” said Tapping. “July 4 will have a lunar eclipse only visible from South America, and on Dec. 26 there will be a solar eclipse over the Indian and Pacific Oceans which will cross over hardly any land at all.”

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.

Jordyn Thomson | Reporter
JordynThomson 
Send Jordyn Thomson an email.
Like the Western News on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Parksville seniors getting stronger with age

Weightlifting couple qualify to compete at Worlds Masters in Montreal in August

Camera captures cougar lurking in Parksville’s Foster Park neighbourhood

Resident shared photo to alert others to big cat’s presence

RDN tipping fees set to go up in July

The Regional District of Nanaimo is set to increase tipping fees at… Continue reading

Ballenas Whalers girls are crazy about rugby

Program has attracted close to 60 girls this season

Langford wants to be home for world’s largest gnome

Business proposes to house Howard the gnome at new location

REPLAY: The best videos from across B.C. this week

In case you missed it, here’s a look at the replay-worth highlights from this week in the province

Courtenay home a ‘writeoff’ after Sunday afternoon fire

Two occupants and one of a neighbouring home treated for minor smoke inhalation

UBC study shows honey bees can help monitor pollution in cities

Scientists analyzed beehives in high density urban areas to those off on Galiano Island

B.C. man mourns the loss of classmate killed in New Zealand mosque attack

When he heard news of the attack, he sent a message to his friend

Ethiopia minister: ‘Clear similarities’ in Boeing crashes

Both the flight data recorder and the cockpit voice recorder were sent to Paris for analysis

Most Read