If you like to check out the sky at night there will be something of interest to look at this Friday (10/24/13). There will be a lunar Eclipse between about 7:50pm and 11:50pm where over the course of 4 hours the moon will come into the shadow of the earth. This will be visible during anywhere on the dark side of the Earth during that time. This is the second lunar eclipse to happen so far this year.

Lunar Eclipse Viewing

Unlike a solar eclipse, lunar eclipses are safe to view with the naked eye. The moon does not get any brighter than it would normally. This does make for an interesting set of pictures where over just a few hours span you can take the moon completely lit through the stages where is it completely dark (in the shadow of the earth) and back to fully lit again.

If you plan on taking pictures it is best to use a tripod to hold your camera. You will normally need to use exposure times of 5 or more seconds to get a bright clear shot. Unlike when taking pictures of star trail you don’t want to set the exposure for much more than that, unless you are looking to have the moon move across a wide angle view picture changing as it goes along. NikonUSA has a good tutorial Lunar Eclipse Photography that explains three different methods to capture the Lunar Eclipse.

Of course if you want to see the lunar eclipse well you will need to get out of any of the larger towns and cities. The light produced around the larger cities like Santiago, Santo Domingo, Punta Cana etc, will make it pretty hard to get a good shot. This is a good time to visit a friend in the campos so you gat get clear pictures without a background haze from the city lights.