Home > Adventures, Eclipses, Ephemeris Program, GTAS Outreach Event, Lunar Eclipse, Solar Eclipse > 10/09/2014 – Ephemeris – The next lunar eclipses and recollections of what happened with yesterday’s eclipse

10/09/2014 – Ephemeris – The next lunar eclipses and recollections of what happened with yesterday’s eclipse

October 9, 2014

Ephemeris for Thursday, October 9th.  The sun will rise at 7:50.  It’ll be up for 11 hours and 18 minutes, setting at 7:08.   The moon, 1 day past full, will rise at 8:01 this evening.

With the two total lunar eclipses done for this year, we can look forward to two more next year.  The April 4th, 2015 eclipse won’t appear total here because the moon will set before totality.  However the September 28th, 2015 lunar eclipse will be an evening eclipse.  These 4 eclipses make a rare tetrad of total lunar eclipses that won’t be repeated until 2032 and 2033.  After September 28th the next total lunar eclipse visible from northern Michigan will be in 2021.  On the solar eclipse side there’s one on the 23rd of this month, a partial eclipse at sunset.  I’ll have more on that later.  After that is the big event, the total solar eclipse on August 21, 2017.  The path of totality will run from coast to coast, running just south of St. Louis Missouri, and just north of Nashville Tennessee.

Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan.  They may be different for your location.


What follows is my recollection of the October 8th lunar eclipse.   Originally relayed in an email to Pat Stinson, freelance writer and author of the wonderful article in the Grand Traverse Insider about the activities of Space Week and the astronomical events in October:

The skies were trending clearer at midnight and again at 2:30 a.m. when I took a shower to prepare for the eclipse.  After that it got slowly worse. That afternoon Ranger Marie Scott of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore said she’d go to our site, Platte River Point, clouds or not, and I was willing.  In setting up the eclipse observing sites,earlier in the year, this site was the one place that if it were clear, we could see either the moon or the sun set onto the Lake Michigan horizon for the three eclipses this year.  I loaded my van with my two telescopes, the C8 and an 11″ Dobsonian and lots of coffee.

I got to the site at 4:30 and began to set up.  Marie arrived a few minutes later and another Grand Traverse Astronomical Society member Don Flegel arrived shortly after that.  They had some rain in Kingsley, where he lived that morning.  We had a strong, cold northwest wind.  When we’re at the Point we commandeer the small parking lot to the north of the road that’s up against a hill.  That hill and my van offered some protection from the wind.  I got the C8 set up just in time to spot the moon emerging from the clouds a few minutes after first contact.  We were able to follow the eclipse intermittently until about 5:45 when a large cloud covered the moon big time.  We could see the glint of the moon off the water until after totality.

This was our situation until about 7:30 when the clouds began to break up,  By then the moon was so low that the foreshortened breaks weren’t all that open.  Then about 10 minutes before moon set it did peek out at intervals.  Unlike the Cheshire Cat’s smile, the moon (cat) had a frown because the upper edge of the moon was coming back into sunlight.  5 minutes later the moon finally disappeared for good in a cloud bank as the puffy clouds overhead caught the sun’s golden sunrise rays.

Marie Scott counted 18 folks that at one time or another came out to witness the event.  Marie also posted some pictures she took of the eclipse on the park’s Facebook page.

  1. richard Kuschell
    October 9, 2014 at 11:30 am

    At least you got a glimps. Rogers Observatory was socked in and I gave up. Two other Grand Traverse Astronomical Society members did git a little view after I abandoned ship and went back to bed.

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