In North America, early-rising sky-watchers in the U.S. West witnessed the start of the three-and-a-half-hour moon show, beginning at 4:45 a.m. Pacific time. For most of the rest of the country, the eclipse was a nonstarter, as it occurred during daylight hours.
The entire lunar eclipse was visible from East Asia, Australia, and the far western part of North America that includes Alaska and Canada's Yukon and Northwest Territories.
In Sweden and the rest of northern Europe, the full moon emerged from Earth's shadow as the natural satellite rose on Saturday night.
The full moon glows crimson in the purple predawn during Saturday's total lunar eclipse over Newport Beach, California.
Unlike the sun, the moon doesn't go dark during its total eclipse. The eclipsed moon's characteristic rusty hues during totality—when the moon is fully within Earth's shadow—result from sunlight being scattered by Earth's dusty atmosphere and then reflected off the moon.
Cloaked in gray just before the color burst of totality, a partially eclipsed full moon sets behind Colorado's Longs Peak, the northernmost Rocky Mountain "fourteener"—a peak taller than 14,000 feet (4,300 meters).
In the places worldwide where Saturday's lunar eclipse was visible, observers generally had particularly clear viewing, according to the Sky & Telescope website—in part because relatively little volcanic ash has been pumped into Earth's upper atmosphere recently.
Seemingly caught in the steel web of Australia's Sydney Harbour Bridge, the moon is partially eclipsed by Earth's shadow Sunday morning, local time. (See your Australia pictures.)
The earth's shadow falls on the moon as it undergoes a total lunar eclipse viewed through the arch supports of the Sydney Harbour Bridge December 11, 2011. REUTERS/Tim Wimborne (AUSTRALIA - Tags: SOCIETY TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)
Photograph by Tim Wimborne, Reuters
A blushing moon—in the full throes of totality—shines on Iran during the weekend's total lunar eclipse.