Micromoon this weekend: What it is, when to see it

Weather

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – It’s been quite nice weather-wise so far this December, and many of us have probably been out and about making last-minute holiday runs, taking advantage of the beautiful conditions. But if you happen to just sit out and catch a break Saturday night, look up into the sky!

A special lunar event called the micromoon will take place Saturday. This moon, also known as the cold moon, will be the last full moon of 2021.

So we’ve heard of the supermoon, the blood Moon and the blue moon. But what is a micromoon?

The micromoon is when a full moon coincides with apogee — the point where the moon’s orbit is farthest away from Earth.

Since the moon orbits in an elliptical path, we will have moments where it may appear and be closer to Earth – that’s the supermoon. The opposite is the micromoon, when it’s furthest away from us.

It’s not an official astronomical term, but this month’s full moon is a micromoon. This one happens to also occur just a few days before the winter solstice.

This weekend, we do have a weak frontal boundary dropping south that could make for some patchy clouds in the evening.

But if you miss Saturday night’s lunar event, don’t worry! We’ll see the first full moon of 2022 on Jan. 17. It’s known as the wolf moon.

For the latest Tampa Bay weather updates, check WFLA.com and download the Max Defender 8 app.

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