CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (WBOY) — Not many things pair as well as the Halloween season and a full moon. This year, if you’re running around trick-or-treating, you might have a little extra light to guide your way as the Hunter’s Moon graces the night sky.
October’s full moon—also known as the Hunter’s Moon—will peak on Saturday, Oct. 28 at 4:24 p.m., meaning that stargazers in West Virginia won’t be able to see the moon at its brightest. Not to worry though, as the moon will still be full and bright when the sun sets about two hours later, just in time for trick-or-treating in places like Lewis County and Parsons.
The Hunter’s Moon will also retain its bright glow for a few nights so others can still catch a glimpse of it if they are trick-or-treating on Halloween night.
Unlike other moons that we’ve covered that draw their names from folklore, the Hunter Moon and its twin the Harvest Moon are named based on when they take place in relation to the start of fall.
According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the Harvest Moon is the moon that takes place closest to the start of fall (September 23, 2023) and the Hunter’s Moon is the one that comes after that, meaning that it can take place in either October or November depending on the lunar cycle.
So where does the name “Hunter’s Moon” actually come from? According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the name originates from the idea that the moon was a sign to hunters to begin preparations for winter.
The actual origin of the name is unclear, but the oldest use of the term can be found in the 1710 edition of the Oxford English Dictionary, according to the Old Farmer’s Almanac. Other sources have suggested that the moon has alternate names such as the Sanguine Moon and Blood Moon, which is believed to come from either the blood from hunting or the changing of the leaves.