2017 Solar Eclipse

The recent solar eclipse was a total bust here in foggy Fort Bragg in Northern California. Exciting as it was it was not exciting enough for me to traipse 300 miles to Oregon to see it. So, I have been paging through my favorite sites looking for pics of the eclipse. There are lots but these three particularly turned me on.

Far away

Far away


Closer – look at the flares

Bingo - what a shot!!!!

Bingo – what a shot!!!!

Mesmerizing. Breathtaking what?

Rainbow Breathing Whales

This is another “bit” I got off of the Space Weather site.

“….. “Rainbow breathing whale” sounds like a mythical creature. On June 18th, Mila Zinkova of San Francisco saw one … for real. “Humpback whales are back in San Francisco Bay, and they are breathing out rainbows.”

Rainbow breathing whales

Rainbow breathing whales

“This is not mythology. It’s physics. When Zinkova took the picture, the sun was behind her back shining down into the droplet-filled exhaust of the whale’s spout. Sunbeams reflecting from the water droplets produced a prismatic spray of color just like an ordinary rainbow.

Of course it didn’t look ordinary. “The full video,” says Zinkova, “may be found here. At 2:10 into the video there are anchovies jumping out of the water trying to escape a feeding whale.”

Father’s Day Car Show in Fort Bragg 2017

Tomorrow over 100 cars will be strutting their stuff tomorrow in the annual Fort Bragg Father’s Day car show. One of the club members (Earl Craighill) is getting up at some unearthly hour to assist with the show.

I do not have an automobile to enter. If I had one of these beauties I would be there on parade.

Crescent Supermoon vs Full Mini-moon

The moon fascinates me – it always has. I think my fascination comes from watching the moon when I was a kid in hospital. It’s only recently that I have begun to understand just how it is the same old moon and look so different. This piece from Space Weather is my latest piece of erudition:

The Moon’s orbit is an ellipse, with one side 50,000 km closer to Earth than the other. This has an effect on the apparent size of the Moon. The lunar disk grows larger when the Moon is nearby and smaller when far away. In the past two weeks we have witnessed two extremes–a crescent supermoon followed by a full ‘mini-Moon.’ Peter Lowenstein of Mutare, Zimbabwe, photographed them both:

Supermoon and Mini-moon

Supermoon and Mini-moon

The size difference was so great, the crescent Moon of May 27th could hold the full Moon of June 9th with room to spare!” says Lowenstein. “I took these photographs from the same location in Mutare using the same optical zoom setting (x60) on the same Panasonic Lumix DMC TZ-60 camera within two hours of moonset.”

Some people say that mini-Moons and supermoons all appear to be the same size.  After all, there are no rulers floating in the sky to measure lunar diameters, and without reference points to provide a sense of scale, one Moon can indeed look much like any other. However, Lowenstein’s photo shows there is a real difference.”

Strawberry Moon Tonight

This is from Space Weather:

According to folklore, tonight’s full Moon is the Strawberry Moon, named after plants that bear their delicious red fruit during the month of June. But if this is really the Strawberry Moon, why does it look so …orange? John Stetson photographed the carrot coloured orb setting over Sebago Lake, Maine, on June 8th.”

Strawbwrry Moon

Strawberry Moon

The orange color is imprinted by the atmosphere. When the Moon is hanging low, airborne dust and other particles scatter blue from moonlight, leaving only red and orange hues.

Something else happens when the Moon is hanging low: The Moon Illusion magnifies its apparent size. It looks huge.Look for the Strawberry Moon rising in the east at sunset.  It’s a huge delight.”