The first of four total eclipses of the moon was visible late in the evening of April 14, 2014. A total lunar eclipse may also be known as a blood moon because the only light that hits the moon is that which has been refracted towards the moon while passing through our atmosphere. In essence, this has the effect of casting a red sunset onto the moon. Going forward, one of the remaining three total eclipses of the moon will occur each 6 months. This frequency of total eclipses has not occurred in over three hundred years.
The events are also unique for multiple other reasons. The first reason is because all four eclipses will be visible from somewhere in North America. This first eclipse had the added attraction of also being on the same night as the closest approach of Mars to the earth since 2008. The blood moon was just below the red planet. A celestial event that will not happen again in our lifetimes.
Having a telescope made the event special although it was clearly visible with the naked eye (or good spotting scope / binoculars from Optics4Birding!). The video below was taken from my home. You may notice that in these photos the moon is oriented the same as what you see with your eyes. It has not been flipped or rotated as images are in most astronomical telescopes. This is a unique advantage of spotting scopes in both photography and viewing. These photos were shot using an 85mm Swarovski ATX Spotting Scope and Canon 7D camera with the appropriate digiscoping adapters. A very simple and quality setup that we have showcased in other posts here on our blog.