A rare ‘blood moon’ and possible lightning flashes could be competing for the attention of Stornoway skywatchers tonight (Friday July 27th).

The long-expected blood moon – a total lunar eclipse during which a red shadow from the earth itself is cast over the full moon – will rise over the south-east horizon in Stornoway at 9.48pm, with 24 minutes of total eclipse left before the shadow of the earth moves slowly away.

But moonrise coincides locally not only with the likelihood of rain and cloudy skies, but with a chance of some thunder and lightning from the storms affecting much of the UK today.

That means the blood moon is unlikely to be visible for long, if at all, and flashes of lightning are just as likely to attract your attention.

If waiting outside for a possible view of the eclipse in the rain is your thing, then there’s one consolation. It’s expected to be warm, with only light winds this evening. Best possible views will be from high vantage points looking south-east out to sea.