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Crescent Sunlight Dapples Region in Eclipse Magic

A rare alignment of cosmic bodies called an annular eclipse spread its magic over Sonoma County, and the rest of Northern California late Sunday afternoon. Add your photos to this article.

 

This gave Sonoma County residents a gentle reminder of the larger forces at work beyond our local concerns. Hopefully, anyway.

As the moon passed between the earth and the sun, its dark disk partially eclipsed the solar spotlight under which we basked most of the day, and rare shadows, darkened skies, strange behaviors took hold.

If you have photos of this celestial syzygy and its effects in your neighborhood, add them to this Patch public gallery.

The spectacle was rewarding even though local residents were far from the center of the eclipse's route -- that was up in Humbolt County, wouldn't you know it -- and the eclipse itself was not total, but annular, with the moon's shadow never fully covering the sun's glare.

"Look, it's happening," said the girl across the street as she called her family outside.

The light dimmed like the slow turn of a celestial rheostat, turning a tobacco hue on the spring afternoon. Then everywhere, shadows of the crescent sun appeared, focused by the leaves of trees into mad sparkling ornamentation.

"Pretty trippy isn't it?" said one housewife.

"Yes, it's eerie."

Peak was at 6:33 locally. Then the shadows gradually thickened again, turning into indistinct splashes of light by 7. And Sunday returned to normal, and the cat came out from under the sofa.

To follow the eclipse's path, visit this page.

If you have photos to add to this gallery, please do! And tell us your experience and memories of past eclipses in the comments below.

drof2th May 21, 2012 at 04:47 AM
We took the lonely telescope out, dusted it off, pointed it to the west and then, many neighbors came by to see the magic!
Christian Kallen May 21, 2012 at 02:29 PM
Thanks Katrina Smalls for adding your eclipse photos to this story!
Christian Kallen May 21, 2012 at 02:29 PM
Thanks to Katrina Small for adding your eclipse photos to this story. Nice backyard shot!
Kathryn Sieck May 21, 2012 at 03:17 PM
"Almost 4" year old Rebecca was enchanted with the view of the eclipse through a piece of dark glass. It was hard to get the glass away from her so her grandma could get a look. We also enjoyed looking at the eclipse using a pinhole in a piece of card. Then we were enchanted when the dappled shade of the trees turned into hundreds of eclipses against the side of a building.
Keri Brenner May 21, 2012 at 04:55 PM
Wow! Cool photos...sweet!

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