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How to Watch a Lunar Eclipse

Lunar eclipses happen just once or twice a year, and can only be seen from the hemisphere that's in darkness. Make sure that when the next lunar eclipse happens in your neck of the woods, you're prepared.


  • Step 1: If you can't be outdoors to watch the lunar eclipse, or cloudy weather in your area is marring your view, check online. Many websites offer live lunar eclipse feeds.
  • FACT: The darkest lunar eclipse of the last century happened in 1971
  • Step 2: If you can, watch the lunar eclipse through binoculars or a telescope. They're not necessary, but they'll enhance the experience. An entire eclipse can take more than 3 hours, so get comfortable.
  • Step 3: Pick a viewing area that's not obscured by trees or buildings. Higher elevations provide a better vantage point to watch a lunar eclipse.
  • Step 4: Check "": for information on when the next partial or total lunar eclipse is happening and where it will be visible. The site will tell you the exact time the eclipse begins and ends -- and even the precise moment for optimal viewing.
  • TIP: Unlike a solar eclipse, which can damage your eyes if viewed directly, a lunar eclipse poses no risk.
  • Step 5: Know what a lunar eclipse is: When the earth comes between the sun and the moon, the sun's light is blocked from the moon, causing it to turn a reddish-orange color. There are partial eclipses and total eclipses.

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