The next full moon will occur this Sunday, October 9. The moon won’t be visible to us at the exact moment full illumination is reached, but it will appear full to nearly full for about three days to the naked eye. This moon won’t be a “supermoon” but it will still brighten the night sky for several nights.
What is the October full moon called?
The full moon that follows the Harvest Moon, the full moon occurring closest to the autumnal equinox, is known most commonly as the Hunter’s Moon. According to NASA, the earliest known usage of the name “Hunter’s Moon” is 1710. As that name implies, this is the time when hunting is getting underway. In particular, most fields had been harvested by this time of year and it makes it easier for hunters to find game with fewer places to hide.
The Algonquin Native American tribe had some different names for this moon. Reports say one of the names they gave this full moon is the Travel Moon. There are a couple of different reasons attributed to this name. One is an observation of wildlife migration patterns and the traveling south for the winter of many species. The other reason may be because native tribes living and hunting in higher elevations would head down to lower elevations to avoid the harsher winter weather at the elevated elevations.
“Travel Moon” isn’t the only name reportedly used by Native Americans. NASA reports other names include the Dying Grass Moon and the Sanguine or Blood Moon. The Dying Grass moon is an obvious name, due to this being the time of year that the growing season comes to a close and grass will become dormant until the spring. As for Sanguine or Blood Moon, there are two theories. First, to define sanguine, that is a descriptive term meaning “blood red.” So, both Sanguine or Blood Moon are basically saying the same thing. The two possible reasons for the name are either the changing of leaves and seeing some species of trees turning blood-red or it also relates to hunting and likely is referencing the process of prepping hunted game for eating.
When can you see the full Hunter’s Moon in the Youngstown area?
The full Hunter’s Moon will occur at 4:55 p.m. on Sunday, October 9. The moon will not be visible at that time. However, it will still appear to be full to the naked eye for the few days around the date of the full moon.
The almost full moon rises at 6:37 p.m. Saturday, October 8 in the eastern sky. It will set Sunday morning at 7 a.m. in the western sky. The full moonrise will take place Sunday evening at 7:01 p.m. in the eastern sky. The full moon will be out until Monday morning at 8:09 a.m., setting in the western sky. The moon will still look nearly full when rising Monday evening. The Monday moonrise will be at 7:24 p.m. in the east-northeastern sky. The following moonset will occur Tuesday at 9:18 p.m. in the west-northwestern sky.
Why isn’t this full moon a “supermoon?”
NASA defines a supermoon as a full moon occurring at the same time as the moon’s perigee. The perigee is the closest point of the moon’s orbit with the earth. The moon takes about 27 days to orbit the earth. During each 27-day cycle is a perigee, or point where the moon is closest to the earth, and an apogee, or point where the moon is farthest from the earth.
To be considered a supermoon, the full moon has to occur when the moon is within 90% of its perigee. In the current lunar cycle, perigee was reached on Tuesday, October 4. This full moon is occurring five days and three hours after the perigee. The moon will be outside of the 90% window at that time so it will not be considered a supermoon. NASA says roughly three to four supermoons occur each year and they usually happen back-to-back. When a full moon occurs during the moon’s perigee or closest point, the moon will appear about 17% bigger and about 30% brighter. Below is a list of all 14 perigees occurring in 2022. The notation “(S)” indicates the perigees that occurred close enough to the full moon to result in a supermoon.