The last total lunar eclipse visible in the U.S. for more than two years happens Tuesday overnight, and sky gazers on the West Coast have timing but not the forecast in their favor.
On Tuesday overnight, the sun, Earth and moon will align so that the Earth’s shadow covers the moon. It will be the last total lunar eclipse until March 2025. However, according to NASA, some partial and penumbral eclipses will occur during the next three years.
In case you missed it, here is a look at the total lunar eclipse.
This celestial event is known as the beaver blood moon lunar eclipse, and its totality will be visible to North and Central America, the Pacific, Asia, Australia and New Zealand.
The total lunar eclipse will mark the second of the year. The last eclipse happened in May but was only visible to part of the U.S.
When is the November lunar eclipse happening?
In the U.S., the best views of the lunar eclipse will be between 4 a.m. EST (1 a.m. PST) until the moon sets.
Those in the West will have the best opportunity to view the eclipse because totality begins at 5:17 a.m. ET or 2:17 a.m. PT. The Earth’s shadow will cover the entire moon during totality. At this point, the moon will appear to have a copper color.
A lunar eclipse is often called a blood moon because, during an eclipse, the only sunlight reaching the moon passes through Earth’s atmosphere. That leaves red light -- which has a longer wavelength than blue light and is less prone to be scattered out by our atmosphere -- to cast a reddish glow on the lunar surface.
According to NASA, weather can impact how red the moon will look. The more dust and clouds in Earth’s atmosphere, the redder the moon will appear.
By 6:42 a.m. EST when totality ends, the sun will be up on the East Coast, while the West Coast won’t have to compete with sunlight just yet and can enjoy the last moments of the eclipse.
How you view the eclipse also depends on the forecast. You can step outside and look up if you have a clear sky.
How to watch online
If the forecast is not in your favor, there are several ways to watch online.
The Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona will air a live stream on YouTube beginning at 4 a.m. EST (2 a.m. MST).
The Virtual Telescope Project will also carry the lunar eclipse live on YouTube. The show with expert commentary begins at 4:30 a.m. EST.
Troubled forecast for West Coast sky gazers
Sky gazers in the Sierra Nevada may have trouble viewing the eclipse due to the ongoing winter storm casting snowfall, gusty winds, rain and clouds across Northern California, Nevada, Washington and Oregon.
According to the FOX Forecast Center, the first wave of winter weather will move through California from north to south Monday. The second wave arrives late Monday, and rain and heavy mountain snow will persist through Wednesday.
Those in the Northern Rockies need to bundle up before heading outside to look up at the blood moon glow as the coldest air of the season moves in on Monday.
To find out how clear the sky will be in your area Tuesday, download the FOX Weather app and use the plan tab to add the total lunar eclipse for your location.