Take that, younger Al!

I was thinking that the crescent moon was going to be bigger than it actually was this morning, so I checked with Stellarium and my sunrise/moonrise app to see when it would appear, knowing that it would be early morning close to sunrise and the sky should be perfectly clear. “Perfectly” is naturally imperfect, by nature – while we may not see distinct and visible clouds, there remains atmospheric humidity and distortion, the more so the lower we see something in the sky because we’re looking at a flatter angle through the sphere of air that surrounds the planet, so a greater thickness of it. And yet, with the help of my compass app (just burning the hell out of the ol’ smutphone,) I located it, and snagged a few pics.

very thin crescent moon, 28 hours from new
Not a lot to see, and might perhaps have been sharper, but there was no way autofocus would have even found this in the frame, so I was focusing manually on a little sliver. Then again, atmospheric haze so low on the horizon (this was only up 10°) might have prevented anything sharper anyway. The smudges to the right, by the way, are the branches of a tree in the foreground.

So I checked after editing the photo, and found that I captured this just 28 hours ahead of new moon, when the sun would be completely behind it and thus not illuminating the side we can see at all. I was curious, remembering that I’d attempted this once before, and went looking: actually, the previous attempt was 70 hours ahead of new, so I handily trashed that personal record. Go older me!

For giggles, I may try again in a couple of hours, when the sun is fully up (it had not quite risen when I got this one,) and see what I can see. I’m not holding my breath, because glare is going to be a serious issue, but it might be interesting. If something turns up, you’ll be seeing it here of course.

No, I wasn’t talking about you, Buggato ;-)

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