The weather condition has not been at all favorable for observing this year’s Full Harvest Moon, the full moon that comes closest to the autumnal equinox. The Moon last night can be hardly seen because it’s always obscured by clouds. Fortunately, short cloud breaks allowed me to take a few images, but the hazy sky made it difficult to get a correct focus on the moon.
The Harvest Moon has a special place in the agricultural history. Through most of the year, the moon rises each day about 50 minutes later than the day before. However, when the autumnal equinox approaches, the difference in rise times drops to about 25 to 30 minutes and even farther north, the difference is 10 to 15 minutes. As the Harvest Moon rises after sunset, this provides extra minutes of light each evening for farmers to work longer hours to harvest their crops. This is how it got its name.
Below were the images I took last September 30, 2012 using my Canon Powershot SX40 HS camera.
April’s Moon reached its full phase last April18 at 10:45 AM PST (2:45 AM UT).
During Palm Sunday in the Philippines last April 17, 2011, I and some friends spotted the 99.5% full Moon rising at dusk. It looked like a big ball of cheese hanging up in the sky along a street named Galaxy Street in Panorama, Marikina City.
It seemed larger near the horizon during moonrise than it does while higher up in the sky.
According to EarthSky.org, this is the first full moon of springtime for the northern hemisphere. We in this hemisphere call it the Pink Moon, to celebrate the return of certain wild flowers. Other names are Egg Moon, Sprouting Grass Moon, or Easter Moon.
The first Full Moon of spring is also usually designated as the Paschal Full Moon or the Paschal Term. In most years, the Christian celebration of Easter is observed on the Sunday after the Paschal Full Moon. If the Paschal Moon occurs on a Sunday, Easter is the following Sunday.
For those living in the Southern Hemisphere, the autumn counterpart of the Paschal Full Moon is called Harvest Moon, the closest full moon to the autumnal equinox.
What sets the Harvest Moon apart from the others is that instead of rising at its normal average of 50 minutes later each day, it seems to rise at nearly the same time for several nights.
However, in direct contrast to the Harvest Full Moon, the Paschal Full Moon appears to rise considerably later each night.
Here are the other photos taken by me and two of my fellow UP AstroSoc folks, Andre Obidos and Bea Banzuela.
*First 2 photos — Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS7 10.1 MP Digital Camera
*Wide angle photos — Canon PowerShot SX20 IS
All images can be clicked to see high-res versions.