Our Moon will move from Waxing Gibbous to full today at 1:20 p.m. in Paradelle. During the Waxing Gibbous phase, the Moon will rise in the east in mid-afternoon and will be high in the eastern sky at sunset. The moon is then visible through most of the night sky, setting a few hours before sunrise. The word “gibbous” first appeared in the 14th century and has it’s roots in the Latin word “gibbosus” meaning humpbacked.
This month’s Full Moon is often called the Snow Moon and February can certainly be a snowy and rough winter month. This past week it has been very mild in my area of the east coast. We have had one blizzard and one smaller storm this winter, but otherwise it has not been that bad. There was a week of days hovering around zero degrees, but that was followed with a jump of 40 degree up right after.
I note that many visitors to this site come through searching for things about weather lore. When I wrote last October about the winter ahead, I put more faith in predictions about El Niño than signs in nature, predictions about winter based on the previous summer, looking at the wooly bear caterpillar) and other critters or just looking at the month of October as a predictor of things to come. But all of those less-scientific methods are certainly more fun.
Meteorologists were saying last autumn day that it would be warmer this winter in Paradelle and across much of the U.S., but noted that a warmer winter doesn’t necessarily mean less snow.
This month’s Full Moon is also called the Storm Moon and I read that among the Micmac people of eastern Canada, the driving winds that often accompany February snows led to the name Snow-Blinding Moon.
A Cherokee name for this moon was the Bone Moon in the “month when the stars and moon are fixed in the heavens.” Another common name used is the Hunger Moon. Both of these probably reflect the bare bones and hunger that probably occurred in winters past. The Dakotah Sioux called this the Moon of the Raccoon or the Moon When Trees Pop.