How To See The Super-Rare, 'Full Harvest Moon' On Friday The 13th

You won't see the next one until 2049.
Author:
Updated:
Original:
Harvest Moon

Harvest Moon

The moon will be full on Friday, marking the first time in nearly two decades that a harvest moon has occurred on Friday the 13th. The last time that happened was October 13, 2000, and we'll have to wait till Aug. 13, 2049 for the next one. 

Even better? If you want to get a look, then know that peak viewing will be at 12:33 a.m. Eastern Time. 

Fans of Halloween—the day, and probably the movie, too—begin the season a little earlier each year, and it seems like there's no more perfect a time than midnight on Friday the 13th under a full, fat moon to get your pumpkin-carving party going.

But what's the difference between a harvest moon and, let's say, a Blood Moon

A blood moon

A blood moon

The former occurs closest to the beginning of autumn, which falls on Sept 23 this year.

Harvest moons are not just any old full moon because they appear to rise several nights in a row at about the same time. In pre-industrial times, the harvest moon usually fell at harvest time, their extra light allowing farmers to work later than usual to bring the crops in.

Oddly, this harvest moon won't be all that helpful, though—it will occur when the moon is at its farthest point from Earth and appears considerably smaller than usual. 

Of course, the full moon is famous for bringing about all kinds of mayhem anyway, so with one falling on the least lucky day of the week, it seems like emergency rooms and police departments everywhere might be gearing up for the worst. 

So keep an eye out around midnight and beyond on Friday the 13th this week. Just hope full moon craziness is minimal and doesn't turn into something like The Purge: Harvest Moon. We made that up, but you never know.