Supermoon: 2011

photo of moon from march 19 2011

Here is the full moon from March 19, the “Supermoon”. It certainly did appear larger than most other moons I’ve photographed, though I didn’t have a way to show the scale so here it looks like any other moon.

Still, the full moon is a beautiful creature and I have always enjoyed studying her surface patterns. They’ve always looked like cities and roads, like what you see when you fly over the desert.

This full moon has been one of the most meaningful and exuberant in cultures throughout human history as evidenced by these full moon names from various traditions, regions and beliefs:

  • Pink Moon, named for the wild phlox or “pinks” which are often the earliest showy flowers to bloom in the woods and fields;
  • Sprouting Grass Moon, because grass will begin to sprout in most of the northern hemisphere except the most northern regions;
  • Egg Moon, I’ve never heard a clear explanation of this one, but it may be that chickens in unheated coops will produce more eggs as the days lengthen and grow warmer;
  • Fish Moon, fish begin migrating and spawning;
  • Worm Moon, worms begin moving as the soil thaws, leaving castings for the garden and attracting robins;
  • Crow Moon, crows begin to caw signaling the end of winter;
  • Crust Moon, snowcover melts during the day and freezes over at night;
  • Sap Moon, sap begins to flow in trees and shrubs, especially maple trees;
  • Lenten Moon, this full moon always falls during Lent, no matter when Easter falls;
  • Paschal Moon, only in some years, when the March full moon falls after the equinox marking both Easter and Passover—this year the April full moon will be the Paschal moon.


  1. Not to mention the children at the preschool I used to teach at would go nuts during the full moon. Nice shot. I’ve always tried to capture the moon but it never turns out right. I need a better lens.

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