Lunar Eclipse, April 4, 2015

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By Mark Bogner

The Kansas skies are good for more than just storm watching. Woke up early this morning and took my son, an astronomy major, my youngest daughter and two of my nephews out to the Lake Afton Observatory to check out the total lunar eclipse. The skies were crystal clear, the temperature was 27F with a hard freeze and a thick frost. There is a small pond just east of the observatory that, due to its shallower water, is warmer than the lake, and the radiation fog coming from it was spectacular. The eclipse itself was a nice one, but the thing that made it stand out from the many lunar eclipses I have seen was that it was setting at totality just as the sun was rising in the east. We in Kansas often take for granted what a wonderful gift it is to live in a “flat” state where you can watch the full moon set and the sun rise at the same time from just about anywhere. This same flatness makes viewing storms amazing and just from Wichita, we can see storms all the way to Oklahoma City, almost to the Colorado border, all the way to Nebraska and almost to Missouri. What a blessing to live where we do!

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