Seattle Night Skies

During a sunny day in the summer, it is hard to beat the views of the Seattle/Puget Sound area.  Night time is another story.  True you can see the moon come up over Puget Sound or the Cascade Mountains, depending on where you are in the area.  And it is many times quite beautiful.  Its reflection on the sound at night can be stunning also.

So here’s the problem.  It never seems to be truly clear at night around the Puget Sound.  There is always some haze or clouds.  I remember sleeping outdoors on a lake in Maine many years ago — talk about a clear sky!  WOW!

Yet we have one little secret we never told you…until now.  You can go for a whole month in the summer here without a cloud in the sky.  Summers are gorgeous, but for that pesky night thing.

You can pretty well count on a lunar eclipse, or a Northern Lights, or a meteor shower happening with hazy skies,  rainy skies, or cloudy skies without rain.  They play it up big several days ahead on the news, and then BANG!  You can’t see anything of interest at night, except the lights of Seattle.  Admittedly, they are a sight, but the eclipse, the meteors, the aurora — no such luck.

Recently there was a lunar eclipse, the fourth this year that could be seen from here if it were clear, but it wasn’t as I remember, for any of them.

Back when I lived in Connecticut, our house was on the side of a hill that looked a long ways out over the Connecticut River valley.  And as it so happened, I owned an 8 inch Celestron telescope.  And a lunar eclipse was predicted.  In those days I never heard it called a “blood moon,” but now everyone calls it that as though it were some new thing, rather than just hype.

Did I mention that I also owned a film SLR camera back then?

Blood Moon


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