Blood moon amazes Peninsula crowds after initial setback

The blood moon glows for some of its last few moments late Sunday night.

Skylar Weiss

The blood moon glows for some of its last few moments late Sunday night.

Skylar Weiss, Staff Writer

An astronomical phenomenon happened on Sunday night, an event so rare that it will not happen again until 2033.

Millions of people worldwide looked up into the night sky to watch the lunar eclipse, which coincidentally took effect during the same time period as the supermoon and harvest moon.

What made this night particularly unique for citizens of the Bay Area peninsula was the initial disappointment of the view of the eclipse. Clouds blocked the moon during the start of the event around 7 p.m.

“I thought we weren’t going to see the moon when I saw the clouds. I was definitely worried, as I had been looking forward to seeing it for weeks,” said sophomore Liam Gunning.

A lunar eclipse happens when Earth casts a shadow on the moon, which is unusual due to the moon’s tilted orbit around our planet. Because of the way our atmosphere absorbs a portion of the sun’s bluish color during an eclipse, reddish-orange light waves are able to shine past Earth and onto the moon, according to USA Today. The unusual coloring sparks the term “blood moon.”

Sunday night also happened to display one of the biggest supermoons of the year. A supermoon occurs when there is a full moon during its closest approach to Earth in its orbit. also states that it can appear up to 14 percent bigger and 30 percent brighter than a typical full moon.

National Geographic also announced that the blood moon fell during the time of this year’s autumn equinox. During the equinox, the time periods between each rising moon are significantly shorter.

Finally, around 8 p.m., the moon rose above the clouds in the east. Belmont and San Carlos residents looked up at the sky to find the moon shining with shades of orange and red.

Many opinions about the events of Sunday night’s sky were positive.

“The eclipse was far out!” said junior Maya Paulo. “It was so bright and different than anything I’ve ever seen before.”