• Looking out at the lake

    Sleeping Bear Dunes

    National Lakeshore Michigan

Event Details

  • 04/15/2014

    Location: Dune Climb parking lot Time: 1:30 AM to 5:30 AM Fee Information: Park pass required Contact Name: Lisa Griebel Contact Email: e-mail us Contact Phone Number: 231-326-5134

View the total Lunar Eclipse. Park in the row furthest from the dunes facing M-109.

A lunar eclipse occurs when the full Moon crosses into the Earth's shadow.  The trick to seeing an eclipse is to be on the night time part of the earth when it happens. In this area on April 15, the Moon enters Earth’s outer shadow, called the penumbra, at 12:53 a.m. About 30 to 45-minutes later, when the Moon is deeper into the penumbra, one might notice that the left side (eastern side) of the Moon is darker relative to the opposite side. Sunglasses actually help to view the penumbral stage of the eclipse. The shadow will get increasingly more visible before the partial eclipse starts. The partial phase, when the Moon starts to enter Earth’s inner shadow, begins at about 1:58 a.m. Binoculars or a telescope can be used to watch Earth's shadow cross the features of the Moon. 

Just after 3:06 a.m., the eclipse will reach totality. By that time, the Moon will be completely immersed in Earth’s inner shadow. Viewing will be quite easy with the naked eye. The Moon will generally be red due to the sunrises and sunsets happening on Earth at the same time. The Moon will begin to emerge from the Earth’s umbra at 4:24 a.m. The ending of the partial phase will be at 5:33 a.m.  As long as the skies are clear, the Dune Climb is an excellent location to view this kind of astronomical phenomenon.