It’s about to be a “super” weekend for sky-gazers.
Over the upcoming weekend, people will get a chance to see the first super moon of the decade — February’s “super snow moon” — which will light up the night sky on Feb. 8 and 9, according to NASA.
Per The Old Farmer’s Almanac, the best time to see the moon will be on Saturday, Feb. 8, as it will rise in the east and reach its highest point around midnight. The moon is said to reach “peak fullness” at 2:34 a.m. ET on Sunday, Feb. 9.
February’s full moon is called the “snow moon” because the moon’s movement was used to track the changing seasons in ancient times, the Almanac explains — and February is commonly associated with heavy snowfall.
Other names for the moon include, “Storm Moon, Hunger Moon, Magha Purnima, Magha Puja, the Mahamuni Pagoda Festival Moon, the Chinese Lantern Festival Moon, and the Full Moon of Tu B’Shevat,” according to NASA.
What makes this specific “snow moon” special is that it also coincides with the super moon — which occurs when a full moon is at its closest point to Earth (a position called “perigee” by astronomers).
This makes the moon appear larger and brighter than normal. However, according to the Almanac, most people won’t be able to spot the difference between super moons and typical full moons.
The February “super snow moon” will be the first of four super moons in 2020, with three more expected in March, April and May, Accuweather reported.
The next super moon will be the “super worm moon” on Monday, March 9, 2020.