Much of the United States will be treated to a total lunar eclipse late Sunday night (May 15-16).
Across WNY, we’re primed for a full showing as the moon turns a deep shade of burnt orange/red. Lunar eclipses come in a variety of flavors, but the total eclipse is the granddaddy of them all. As the moon enters into Earth’s outer and then inner shadow, the moon will progressively darken and eventually acquire the classic orange/red color.
Here in WNY, the show will technically last for more than 5 hours. But it’s the total eclipse portion you’re most interested in, which will run a little more than an hour Sunday night into early Monday morning.
From a visual standpoint, the partial phase of the eclipse isn’t nearly as impressive as totality. Our window for totality runs from 11:29pm Sunday night to 12:53am Monday morning.
While this weeks forecast features an abundance of clear skies, it’s likely not going to linger into the weekend.
A storm system is set to impact the region somewhere in the Sunday timeframe. It is likely a cold front will get dragged through WNY. Our ability to see the eclipse could very well hinge not on the presence of that cold front, but the timing.
If it comes through Sunday afternoon, we may get some breaks by Sunday night. If it slows down, the same opportunity for breaks could exist. While we know the front will be around, it is too early to latch onto a particular timing solution.
This year will actually have two total lunar eclipses. The next will be November 8th, 2022. From there, we’ll have to wait until March 14, 2025 for the next total lunar eclipse locally. Don’t forget, we’re in perfect line for the big total SOLAR eclipse April 8th, 2024.
For now, we’ll play this one by ear and hope for the best!