Saturday, April 4, 2015

The Pink Moon



You have to be able to appreciate these things. How many people can say it was a full moon last night and appreciate it?

- Sandy Miller



Image courtesy of space.com
It's hard to believe that I am sitting here and talking about the April full moon, since as we know the year started just yesterday.  And yet here we are... in April, welcoming fourth full moon of the year.

April's full moon goes by several different names but it's best known as the Pink Moon because it heralds the appearance of the moss pink or wild ground phlox, one of the first spring flowers.  I've been having my eyes peeled for any new growth in my area and can say with some confidence that it has not happened yet but we are having this April full moon so very early in the month.  The ground has just began to thaw.  I will continue my spring watch, it's bound to happen eventually.

Other names for the April full moon are Sprouting Grass Moon, Egg Moon and Fish Moon.  The name Fish Moon is mostly used by the coastal tribes because the full moon usually coincides with the shad swimming upstream.

The moon itself as we know does not appear pink but this year's Pink Moon was far from its regular silvery colour at least for part of the world.   Last night between the hours of 3 am and 5 am pacific time (6-8 am eastern time), the moon went through a full eclipse and dazzled onlookers with its beautiful red hue for part of it.  I was fast asleep in my bed at that time. I wanted to set an alarm to wake up at 6 am and see if the clouds retreated enough to see the moon, but unfortunately I fell asleep before I remembered to do it.  For us on the East coast, the totality (when the entire moon turns eerie shade of red) was not visible though.  The rising sun interrupted the show leaving us with only a partial lunar eclipse.

All is not lost however, because this lunar eclipse was one of the four consecutive total lunar eclipses, called a tetrad, starting on April 15, 2014 and ending with total lunar eclipse on September 28, 2015. This last total lunar eclipse in September will be fully visible for us folks on the east coast and at a prime time of 10:11 pm.  All we have to worry about is that it's not cloudy that day.  The totality of the eclipse will be visible for over an hour.   I think I will set the reminder for it right now before I forget.

Namaste


4 comments:

  1. Indeed it is. Thank you for stopping by Lon! :)

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  2. It was overcast in Manitoba where I was visiting and so did not see it, alas.

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    1. Ahh.. that's too bad but be ready for September 28 :)

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