The first full moon of fall 2022—the “Hunter Moon”—will be at its best on not one, but two consecutive nights this weekend.
Named for the pre-winter hunting season, the October full moon is sometimes called the “Sanguine Moon, “Dying Grass Moon” and “Travel Moon”.
Whatever the name, the rise is sure to be a special celestial sight available to anyone who takes the time to plan to see this precisely timed gift of nature.
That doubles this month.
Here’s everything you need to know about the full “Hunter’s Moon,” including exactly when, where, and how to see it at its biggest, brightest, and most colorful location from where you are:
When is ‘Hunter’s Moon?’
The “Hunter’s Moon” full moon will occur on Sunday, October 9, 2022.
Why catch the ‘Hunter’s Moon’ at moonrise
Catch it as it rises, and the full “Hunter’s Moon” will appear more colorful and larger than it would at any other time of night — but only for about 15 minutes.
Because the Hunter’s Moon will appear orange
Have you ever heard of “Raleigh scattering?” Long-wavelength red light travels more easily through Earth’s atmosphere than short-wavelength blue light, which hits more particles and is scattered. So a rising full moon looks orange because you see it through a lot of atmosphere—for the same reason a setting Sun looks reddish.
What is the “Moon Illusion?”
Watching the full moon on the horizon gives your brain a chance to compare its size to everything else it can see. This is the “Moon illusion,” which makes the Full Moon appear larger than it really is when viewed between buildings or surrounded by trees and mountains.
Watching the ‘Hunter’s Moon’ rise in the twilight
The full moon always looks best as it rises because only on the night of the full moon is it possible to see the Moon appear on the horizon during twilight. Since it usually rises about 50 minutes later each night, it rises early in the evening just before the night of the full moon and well after dark on the nights after the full moon.
However, this is not strictly the case this month. Because it occurs near the equinox, and because the timing of the full moon works well for the Western Hemisphere, the Moon rises only about 25 minutes later each night as seen from the mid-latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere. So this month there are actually two consecutive nights that you can see the Full Moon (or thereabouts) rising relatively soon after the Sun sets.
The Best Time to See ‘Hunter’s Moon’
Here are the exact times to see October’s “Hunter’s Moon” from a few key cities, but check the exact moonrise and sunset times for your location. If you don’t see the Full Moon peeking over the horizon at these exact times, wait a few minutes. It will go up!
Just after sunset on Sunday, October 9, 2022
Sunday night offers the best chance to see the full “Hunter’s Moon” rising in the twilight sky:
- In New York, sunset is at 6:26 PM. EDT and moonrise is at 6:35 p.m. EDT (moment of the full moon is at 3:56 p.m. EDT).
- In Los Angeles sunset is at 6:28 PM. PDT and moonrise at 6:39 p.m. PDT (moment of full moon is at 12:56 p.m. PDT).
- In London sunset is at 6:22 pm. BST and moonrise at 6:29 p.m. BST (moment of full moon is at 8:56pm BST)
Just after sunset on Monday, October 10, 2022
Monday afternoon offers another chance to see the full “Hunter’s Moon” rise in a twilight state:
- In New York, sunset is at 6:25 pm. EDT and moonrise at 6:59 p.m. EDT.
- In Los Angeles sunset is at 6:26 PM. PDT and moonrise at 7:07 p.m. PDT.
- In London sunset is at 6:20 pm. BST and moonrise at 6:43 p.m. BST.
Where to watch ‘Hunter’s Moon’
The full moon always rises in the east at dusk (opposite sunset) and sets in the west the next morning (opposite sunrise). You will most easily see it appear on the horizon if you get somewhere high up or if you go to a coast with a clear view of the horizon.
How to watch “Hunter’s Moon”
The first full moon of the Northern Hemisphere autumn season, the ‘Hunter’s Moon’ will rise in the east just after sunset, shine brightly throughout the night, and then set in the west near sunrise.
You don’t need special equipment to see a full moon. Your bare eyes are perfect. However, if you have a pair of binoculars then they will give you an amazing close-up shot. It is absolutely safe.
When is the next full moon?
The next full moon after the ‘Hunter’s Moon’ is sure to be special for some lucky people. That’s because the full “Beaver Moon” of November 8, 2022 will be swallowed by Earth’s mighty shadow in space.
Visible from North and South America and the Pacific, this very special 84-minute total lunar eclipse will see the full moon take on a reddish hue. Cue the nickname “Blood Moon” – and an ominous “Beaver Blood Moon!”
I wish you clear skies and open eyes.