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Business News/ Science / News/  Christmas Cold Moon 2023: When and where to see the last full of the year
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Christmas Cold Moon 2023: When and where to see the last full of the year

As we are a few days away from saying goodbye to 2023 and welcoming 2024, the special celestial gift – Cold Moon—the longest and last full moon of the year will illuminate the sky on Christmas. Here is a quick guide on how and where the moon lovers can watch this celestial event.

Cold Moon 2023: When and where to see the last full of the year (Photo: Nasa)Premium
Cold Moon 2023: When and where to see the last full of the year (Photo: Nasa)

As we are a few days away from saying goodbye to 2023 and welcoming 2024, the special celestial gift – Cold Moon—the longest and last full moon of the year will illuminate the sky on Christmas. Here is a quick guide on how and where the moon lovers can watch this celestial event

Christmas Cold Moon 2023: Date and Time

The Cold Moon or the Long Night Moon can be seen through the naked eye on December 25. But it is not a single-day event. Skygazers can observe this celestial event from the night of Christmas to December 26 at 7:34 p.m. EST. The Moon Before Yule will continue to be seen for a few evenings after its peak. "December’s full moon could appear wholly round to the naked eye as early as Sunday," according to Old Farmer’s Almanac.

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Christmas Cold Moon 2023: How it derived its name

The Cold Moon derived its name from Native Americans—specifically the Mohawk people—about the cooler temperatures typically associated with December in the Northern Hemisphere.  Some other names for the full moon include "Snow Moon," "Winter Maker Moon," and the "Moon When the Deer Shed Their Antlers," marking the season of renewal for deer species. Since this is the last full moon before the winter solstice, it is said that old Europeans called this moon the Oak Moon, which ties back to ancient druid traditions of harvesting mistletoe from oak trees.

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Being the first full moon since the winter solstice on December 21st, the Cold Moon comes with extended viewing opportunities during the longest nights of the year. “The winter solstice Moon takes the highest path along the sky and is above the horizon longer than any Moon — hence, it’s the longest night," according to the Almanac.

Christmas Cold Moon 2023: How to watch 

Try to find out a place from where you can get unobstructed views of the horizon. The Cold Moon will rise in the east, making it visible from anywhere with a clear view of the sky.

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Try to locate Capella in the constellation Auriga and the Betelgeuse in Orion as the full moon shines between the two bright stars in the sky.

If you have binoculars, the Cold Moon offers an ideal opportunity to test them out during its three successive evenings of rising from December 25th to the 27th.

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Published: 24 Dec 2023, 11:03 PM IST
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