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As January 20 turns into January 21, a super moon will shine brightly in our night sky. And so will a blood moon. And a…wolf moon?? And a lunar eclipse! It’s the motherload of lunar extravaganzas, all happening in one night.
Of course, these are all the same moon. On Sunday night, stretching into the wee early morning hours of Monday, the one single moon we’ve adored for 4.5 billion years will be all of these things at once. If you play your cards right and find yourself lucky with the weather, you’ll get a chance to spend some time moon-gazing and enjoying a spectacle that’s about as rare as moon-gazing events get.
Blood - Moon - Refers - Moon - Awash
A blood moon refers to a moon awash in a reddish tint, and this only happens during lunar eclipses. (So, it’s actually redundant to say it’s a blood moon and a lunar eclipse. Don’t be that person during your Sunday evening moon-gazing party.) The reddish tint is caused by the difference in how light bouncing off the moon scatters in our atmosphere when the moon sits in our shadow (as also happens when it’s rising or setting). Sunday’s lunar eclipse is total, meaning the moon will fall completely under the shadow of the Earth.
And lastly, the wolf part is… well, it’s basically made up. Weather websites and almanacs often claim it’s an archaic name given to full moons in January, when Native Americans and early colonists would notice the creatures howling rambunctiously outside their villages. But which Native Americans? When? Where? Why do we still put it in...
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