The next full Moon will be on Friday, January 6, 2023

Image Credit:

The Next Full Moon is the Wolf or Ice Moon; the Moon after Yule or the Old Moon; a Long Night Moon; the Shakambhari, Paush, and Thiruvathira Festival Purnima; and Duruthu Poya and the Ananda Pagoda Festival Moon.

The next full Moon will be on Friday, January 6, 2023, appearing opposite the Sun in Earth-based longitude at 6:08 PM EST. This will be on Saturday from the West Center Africa and Central European Time Zones eastward to the International Date Line in the mid-Pacific. The bright star appearing to the lower left of the Moon will be Pollux. The Moon will appear full for about 3 days around this time, from Thursday evening through Sunday morning.

The Maine Farmers’ Almanac began publishing “Indian” names for full Moons in the 1930s. Over time these names have become widely known and used. According to this almanac, as the full Moon in January this is the Wolf Moon, from the packs of wolves heard howling outside the villages amid the cold and deep snows of winter. Another name is the Ice Moon. Europeans called this the Moon after Yule, a 3-day winter solstice festival in pre-Christian Europe. Another English name for this Moon is the Old Moon.

Some might consider this a Long Night Moon. From moonrise on January 5 to moonset on January 6 the full Moon will be in the sky longer (15 hours 49 minutes) and will reach a higher maximum altitude (78.3 degrees at 11:38 PM) than it was for the Long Night Moon in December. Although the Moon will ride higher in the sky for longer than last month’s Moon, the time it will be in the sky at night will be about a minute shorter.

In the Hindu calendar this full Moon is Shakambhari Purnima, the last day in the 8-day Shakambari Navratri holiday that celebrates the goddess Shakambhari. In the Purnimanta tradition that ends months on the full Moon day, this full Moon is Paush Purnima, the last day of the Hindu month of Paush. The day after Paush Purnima is the start of the month of Magha, a period of austerity. Bathing in the holy waters of India is an important activity for both Shakambari Navratri and Magha. This full Moon corresponds with the Thiruvathira festival celebrated by Hindus in the Indian states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu.

For the Buddhists of Sri Lanka, this is Duruthu Poya, which commemorates Siddhartha Gautama Buddha’s first visit to Sri Lanka. In Myanmar this full Moon corresponds with the Ananda Pagoda Festival, a week-long celebration of this Buddhist temple built in 1105 AD in the city of Bagan.

In many lunar and lunisolar calendars the months change with the new Moon and full Moons fall in the middle of the lunar month. This full Moon is in the middle of the twelfth month of the Chinese calendar, Tevet in the Hebrew calendar, and Jumada al-Thani in the Islamic calendar, also known as Jumada al-Akhirah or Jumada al-Akhir.

As usual, the wearing of suitably celebratory celestial attire is encouraged in honor of the full Moon. Stay warm, but when the sky is clear, take advantage of these early nightfalls and late sunrises to get out, look up, and share the wonders of the sky!

As for other celestial events between now and the full Moon after next (with specific times and angles based on the location of NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC):

We may have a naked eye comet in late January and early February! Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) should be visible in the morning sky with binoculars and may become bright enough to see with the naked eye, especially from a dark area with clear skies. For more information see the Morning Sky Highlights and the Detailed Daily Guide around February 1 below.

As winter continues the daily periods of sunlight continue to lengthen. On Friday, January 6, 2023 (the day of the full Moon), morning twilight will begin at 6:24 AM EST, sunrise will be at 7:27 AM, solar noon will be at 12:13:40 PM when the Sun will reach its maximum altitude of 28.68 degrees, sunset will be at 5:01 PM, and evening twilight will end at 6:04 PM. By Sunday, February 5 (the day of the full Moon after next), morning twilight will begin at 6:11 AM, sunrise will be at 7:11 AM, solar noon will be at 12:22:02 PM when the Sun will reach its maximum altitude of 35.29 degrees, sunset will be at 5:34 PM, and evening twilight will end at 6:34 PM.

No major meteor showers are expected to peak during between this full Moon and the next, although the Quadrantid meteor shower will peak the evening of January 3, just before this full Moon. Moonlight will interfere, so the best time to look near the peak may be the morning hours of January 4 when the Moon will be lower in the sky and the radiant for this meteor shower will be higher.

Note: This article is taken from


Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *