Christmas 'cold moon' will be the final full moon of 2023

The final full moon of 2023 will appear on Christmas night and reach its peak the following evening, offering a warm lunar glow during the cool holiday nights.


Naming winter's first full moon

December's full moon is known as the 'cold moon,' a term coined by Native Americans to describe the cooler temperatures of December in the Northern Hemisphere.

Other names for this final full moon of the year include the 'Snow Moon,' the 'Winter Maker Moon,' and the 'Moon When the Deer Shed Their Antlers.'

The antlers of deer species, such as deer, elk, moose, and caribou, begin to fall off around this time as breeding season comes to a close.

Seeing the spectacle

This month's full moon is the first to appear since the winter solstice, which marks the shortest day of the year.

Sky-gazers can catch a glimpse of the massive moon anywhere with a clear view of the sky, but unobstructed views of the horizon are best.

The long nights during the winter solstice will provide ample opportunities for viewing the full cold moon.