Tonight was the night of the "Harvest Moon", and while I wasn't harvesting this evening, it sure was nice to be on the back of my gondola to watch that giant luminous sphere rise as the sun was touching down. It turns out that tonight's is a "super" harvest moon.
According to Jack Noyes at NBC Los Angeles:
"A “super” harvest moon, won’t happen again until 2029.
Farmers named the harvest moon —a full moon near the time of fall equinox — in the days before electric lights. Farmers used the harvest moon to spend more time gathering crops.
Typically the harvest moon comes within days or weeks of the equinox. But this year the moon hits its maximum brightness six hours after the equinox, which is at 8:10 p.m., said Griffith Observatory Curator Laura Danly.
The full moon is at its brightest at 2:17 a.m."
I must admit that I wasn't aware of this phenomenon until I was out on the water and a friend called and left a voice mail on my phone.
If you're reading this now having not seen the moon, you may have already missed it, but if you were out on a gondola tonight too, then you saw it and know what I'm talking about.
To read more about the phenomenon, take a look at things from NASA's perspective - it's worth a read.
And as is often the case, the transition from day to night yeilded a brilliantly colored sky.
I love the view from the back of a gondola.