A “blue moon”, two lunar eclipses and four “super moons”: when exactly to see the 13 full moons in 2023

Do you like the full moon? One of nature’s most spectacular and underrated spectacles, the rising full moon in the east each month is always worth being outside. Rising opposite sunset, high in the sky around midnight, and setting opposite sunrise, in 2023 there is a bonus for moon watchers because there is no 12, but 13 full moons to be seen.

Add in a few lunar eclipses and four so-called “super moons” and it promises to be another great year for moonwatching. Here are all the dates for the 13 full moons in 2023, including what’s special for each:

1. “Wolf Moon” hangs high in the sky

When: 23:08 UTC, Friday, January 6, 2023

The first full moon of winter in the northern hemisphere, the “wolf moon” may have a terrible name, but since it is closest to the December solstice, when the sun is at its lowest, it is the highest full moon of the year in the northern hemisphere. Since the “Wolf Moon” will take a higher and more northerly path across the night sky because it is opposite a low sun, it will be above the horizon longer than at other times. of the year and will pass as close to the zenith (the point in the sky directly overhead) as it always does. It will be best seen at moonrise on Saturday, January 7, 2023.

2. “Snow Moon”

When: 6:29 PM UTC, Sunday, February 5, 2023

The second full moon of winter in the northern hemisphere, the aptly named “Snow Moon” will be best seen at moonrise on the evening of Sunday, February 5.

3. “Worm Moon”

When: 12:40 UTC, Tuesday, March 7, 2023

Moonrise on the evening of Tuesday, March 7, 2023 is the perfect time to step out and see the third and final full moon of winter in the northern hemisphere.

4. “Pink Moon”

When: 12:40 UTC, Thursday, April 6, 2023

Named after the blooming of wild terrestrial phlox flowers, the first full moon of spring in the Northern Hemisphere will appear on the horizon just after sunset on Thursday, April 6.

5. ‘Moon Eclipse Flower’

When: 5:34 p.m. UTC, Friday, May 5, 2023

The second full moon of spring in the northern hemisphere will be eclipsed by Earth. A weak penumbral lunar eclipse will see the full Moon drift into the fuzzy outer shadow of Earth, but only for those in Asia and Australia. For everyone else, the best time to see it will be moonrise on Friday, May 5, 2023.

6. ‘Strawberry Moon’ is a handy fruit

When: 03:42 UTC, Saturday, June 3, 2023

The third and final full moon of spring in the Northern Hemisphere, the “Strawberry Moon” will appear on the eastern horizon draped in orange hues most vividly on the evening of Saturday, June 3, 2023. For the Northern Hemisphere , it will be the lowest – hanging full moon of the year simply because it is opposite the most hanging sun.

7. ‘Buck Supermoon’

When: 01:39 UTC Monday, July 3, 2023

The first summer full moon in the northern hemisphere, the “Buck Moon” will also be the first of four supermoons in 2023, although the farthest from Earth at 361,934 km. Best seen at moonrise on Sunday, July 2, 2023, just before it becomes 100% full.

8. ‘Sturgeon super moon

When: 01:39 UTC Tuesday, August 1, 2023

The second summer full moon in the northern hemisphere, the “sturgeon moon” is a supermoon, orbiting 357,530 km from Earth. This is only slightly further than next month’s nearest full moon, so the “sturgeon moon” will be very large and very bright. It will be at its best at moonrise on two successive evenings, Monday July 31 and Tuesday August 1.

9. ‘Blue Supermoon’ – the biggest and brightest of the year

When: 01:35 UTC Wednesday, August 30, 2023

The third and last full moon of summer in the northern hemisphere. It’s called a “blue moon” because it’s the second full moon in a calendar month, something that has to happen every few years because the Moon takes 29 days to orbit Earth. . It’s also the closest full moon to Earth, so the best “supermoon” of the year. It will orbit 357,344 km from Earth and be the largest and brightest full moon of the year. It will be at its best at moonrise on two successive evenings, Wednesday August 30 and Thursday August 31.

10. ‘Harvest super moon

When: 09:57 UTC Friday, September 29, 2023

The first autumn full moon in the northern hemisphere will occur just six days after the autumnal equinox on September 23. Becoming full while 361,552 km from Earth, this full moon is also technically a “supermoon” – the last moon of 2023. It will be best seen at moonrise in the east on Friday the 29th. september.

11. “Hunter’s Moon Eclipse” near Halloween

When: 8:24 p.m. UTC on Saturday, October 28, 2023

The second autumn full moon in the northern hemisphere will also be eclipsed by Earth. It will be a partial lunar eclipse, with the moon sliding into Earth’s central shadow. It might seem quite strange to those who are able to see it, this time in Europe, Africa and Asia. For everyone else, the best time to see it will be at moonrise on Saturday, October 28.

12. ‘Beaver Moon’

When: 09:16 UTC Monday, November 27, 2023

The third and final autumn full moon in the Northern Hemisphere, the “Beaver Moon” – also known as the “Mourning Moon” and “Cold Moon” – will be best seen at moonrise on Monday, November 27.

13. “Christmas Cold Moon”

When: 00:33 UTC on Tuesday, December 26, 2023

The first winter full moon in the northern hemisphere, the aptly named “Cold Moon” will occur on Boxing Day and just five days after the winter solstice. Also called the “Long Nights Moon” in North America and, as it occurs just after Christmas Day, the “Moon after Yule” in Europe, it will be best seen at moonrise on the evening of Tuesday, December 26.

I wish you clear skies and big eyes.

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