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Portsmouth to Ceuta

Saga Pearl II blog - Captains' blogs

21st January, 2019

An early start this morning as we made our way along the coast of Portugal. A timely break in the clouds meant we were in place for a really good look at the only full lunar eclipse of 2019, an event going by the catchy name of the Super Blood Wolf moon.

Things kicked off at just after 0430, with the moon slowly being eclipsed by the Earth… But the real show began at 0540, when the moon moved into total eclipse and turned blood red!

This lasted for the best part of an hour, and I saw many passengers up and about early on the sundeck taking in the view.

But why such an odd name I hear you cry!


Super: during the eclipse the moon was at its perigee, that is the closest point in its orbit to the Earth. As such it appeared around 14% larger, and 30% brighter than usual

Blood: the moon went red because some light managed to slip through the Earth’s atmosphere and strike it. Only the long wavelength light (red) made it through the atmosphere, while the shorter wavelength light (blues) were refracted downwards towards our planet.

Wolf: the January full moon is known as the Wolf Moon or in some cultures the Old Moon, or the Ice Moon.

By 0730 it was all over and time for a well earnt breakfast on this, our last sea day before our call to the Spanish port of Ceuta, and the Pillars of Hercules.

Nicola Boak, Deck Cadet

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