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Mostly clear skies expected in Honolulu for lunar eclipse

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 9:52 p.m. HST, Apr 14, 2014

The best spot to watch the total eclipse of the moon may be from the leeward areas of Oahu Monday night, where mostly clear skies are forecast.

Windward areas will be cloudy with the chance of isolated showers, but the eclipse may still be visible through breaks in the clouds.

Honolulu and other leeward areas should have clear skies, with occasional clouds passing overhead.

Gusty tradewinds are expected to die down by the evening, although it will likely still be breezy.

A wind advisory is in effect for parts of Lanai and Kahoolawe, and the south Big Island,north and east Kohala and the summits until 6 p.m. Tuesday. Northeast winds of 20 to 35 mph, with gusts of 45 mph are expected.

The winds are also generating a trade wind swell with surf of 5 to 9 feet along east shores, where a high surf advisory is in effect until 6 p.m. Tuesday.

The eclipse will begin at 6:53 p.m., but won't be visible until 7:58 p.m. Monday night. Totality happens between 9:06 p.m. and 10:24 p.m.

During totality, the moon will be dark and deep red, which should allow more stars to appear. The eclipse is sometimes called a "blood moon."

The moon will move out of the Earth's shadow from 10:24 p.m. until 11:33 p.m.

The UH-Manoa's Institute for Astronomy will host two free eclipse-viewing parties for the public at Kapiolani Park and Kahuku Public Library from 7 to 11:30 p.m. The school will bring telescopes and binoculars from its labs for the public to use during the eclipse.

Bishop Museum is also hosting its own lunar eclipse viewing from 8 to 11:30 p.m. Monday. General admission is $8, $6 for ages 4 to 12, and free for Bishop Museum members and kids under 4.

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