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Partial Lunar Eclipse on June4th 2012
This eclipse was just one day before the transit of Venus so it didn't get a lot of attention. It was also just a partial eclipse, not a total one with about 28% of the Moon being obscured.
For this eclipse I traveled to the city of Chascomus, as the eclipse was near moonset from my location I needed a clear west horizon and Chascomus has a very nice natural lagoon with a clean horizon towards the West. Sunsets are very beautiful at this place.
I arrived at 6am with temperature in -3C, the weather was almost clear with some friendly looking passing clouds. The penumbral part of the eclipse was starting at 7pm but the umbral part was already starting so I took some photos.
This photo shows the Moon inside the Umbra of Earth, usually this part of the eclipse is not really noticeable to the naked eye but this time, I don't know why, the darkening on the top of the Moon was evident. Maybe because of the very clear thin air or the weather conditions. I'm not sure.
When the penumbral eclipse started it was really easy to see the moon darkening, a very nice show and the Moon was still quite high in a dark sky. Due to the excellent visibility as low as 0 degrees at the location I was prepared to shoot the whole eclipse. As the moon was darkening I took several photos producing the sequence that starts this post.
This photo shows the maximum phase of the eclipse, the shadow of the Earth is taking a good bite on the Moon. At this point some clouds started to appear coming from the South, that's usually a bad sign so I switched to a wider focal length to try to capture some nightscapes of the eclipse.
Here you can see the Lagoon and the partially eclipsed Moon above. The "bite" on the moon is clear and was easy to see with the naked eye. There's a thin layer of fog above the lagoon surface that you can see in the photo. The reflection of the Moon was a beautiful sight and the light of the Moon lit the clouds too. As the Moon was getting lower it will soon disappear into the thick clouds so I was both lucky and happy to be able to take this shot.
Now you see the partially eclipsed Moon (top) being also eclipsed by clouds (bottom), a few seconds after this shot everything was over as the clouds swallowed the Moon. I couldn't take photos of the Moon setting eclipsed as I expected but at least my memory card was not empty. The next lunar eclipse from my location will be in 2014, a long wait!
I'm glad to see you captured it! I agree - the poor moon didn't get much attention with Venus taking it all. I was lucky to be in Hawaii (for the Venus transit) so I saw the whole eclipse: http://flic.kr/p/ce514o
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