For the Super Blood Moon Eclipse, I wanted to be in a place to view the moonrise close to the horizon. This was a challenge along the hills of the Oregon Coast. I’d noticed a big parking lot next to Nehalem Bay boat launch on my way to my motel and went back there with my Nikon and tripod.
There was a great high spot just across the highway where I set up just as the sun went down. Then I noticed cars gathering in the parking lot, all facing away from the water and to the east. It looked like people gathering to watch a drive-in movie and the sky was the screen.
Before long I was joined at my location by two other cars with ladies toting cameras and tripods. As we waited we struck up a casual conversation and we all wondered why the heck the moon was taking so long to rise.
People in the parking lot were out of their cars all looking toward the horizon and finally someone yelled, “Hey! There it is!” The moon had been up for several minutes before we all noticed the pale, pink ghost just above the trees.
The two other ladies and I started fiddling with our cameras. We had to go old school manual because our fancy cameras couldn’t find anything to focus on.
As the sky gradually darkened my two new friends and I joked about the warned End of Days. We’d heard there was a punch card available with a list of ten predicted apocalypses. When nine of them were punched, the last one was free.
While the moon gradually moved out of the earth’s shadow we monkeyed with shutter speeds and chatted. We learned we were all from other places with not much in common except cameras and an appreciation for the earth and sky.
We joked how we probably could have made some cash selling popcorn to the impromptu crowd gathered across the highway. Then we decided, since it was supposed to be the end of the world, we personally would go all out for Ben and Jerry’s ice cream ourselves.
After an hour or so of geeking about the moon, the crowd began to scatter. I gathered my gear and went back to my motel where I discovered I had a great view of the “Super Moon” right from the parking lot.
Later from my room I continued to watch a show much better than anything available on a tiny screen—with no commercials.
Finally, Lady Luna appeared in her full brilliance. It was fun to think about the group of friendly people of all ages who found themselves in the same place gazing like looneys at the evening sky.