The Full Buck Moon!

Hey, Sky Fans! Happy Friday! What a busy week, but the hummos, with favas this time, is done, the bagels are bagelling, the tidy outline of a book I’m working on will be done by the time the kids get home, and the beer is in the icebox. I hope, if your week has been busy, too, you’ve got a great weekend ahead.

Speaking of the weekend, tonight, Friday, catch the Moon in a nice, almost straight line with the giant yellow planet Saturn to its right, and then the giant red star Antares a little lower and to Saturn’s right. If you continue to the right, you’ll come to the giant stripey planet, Jupiter, brightening the high southwest skies after dark.

The Moon and Stuff, July 7 & 8, 2017
The Moon and Stuff, July 7 & 8, 2017

But wait, there’s more! The Full Buck Moon, sometimes, also, the Full Thunder Moon, will be in your sky this weekend, though farther from Saturn. I hedge a little here with good reason, I hope. The actual moment of fulloscitude, when that Sun-Earth-Moon line is straight as a pin and the Moon is at opposition, directly opposite the Sun in the sky, is at 4:07 UTC Sunday, July 9. So, depending on where you are, the exact timing of when you’ll see the full Moon will vary based on that.

Here in the US, 4:07 UTC Sunday translates to 12:07 AM Eastern, 11:07 PM Saturday, July 8, Central, 10:07 Mountain, and 9:07 Pacific. Effectively for the whole US we’re talking about Saturday  night. If you’re awake and not doing other things, you can look out at the sky at the right moment, point, and say “Yep.”

Not to minimize what’s going on, but things in space don’t usually happen very fast on a human time scale. The world will see the Moon as pretty close to full Saturday and Sunday nights. After that the Moon will round the corner and start heading back in toward the new Moon.

This particular full Moon is kind of an interesting one. First, it’s the last full Moon before the anniversary of our old friends Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin cutting the Eagle’s engines at tranquility base. They became the first people ever to walk on another world 48 years ago this month.

Also, these summer full Moons are really interesting. Taken on their own, it’s just another full Moon. Wonderful enough, but easy to take for granted. In the context of the greater pattern of the solar system, you can really start to see the seasonal shifts we experience every day.

Full Moons rise at sunset and set at sunrise, which means they mirror the Sun. Since the daylight hours are at their longest now, though, admittedly, they’re shrinking, that gives less time for July’s full Moon to be in the sky. The longer the Sun is up, as it is in summer, the shorter the amount of time the Moon is up. In fact in the northern hemisphere, June’s and July’s full Moons spends the least time above the horizon of all full Moons. What’s more, with the Sun sailing so high up in the sky these days, our view of the Moon keeps it relatively low and toward the south in the sky all night.

In winter, like it is now in the southern hemisphere, the days are short. So, for those people, this full Moon will be up much longer, and arc much higher overhead.

If you can, grab a look, and try to imagine the bigger picture of it all. You really can start to piece it all together.

Have a great weekend, everyone. Thanks for stopping by, and clear skies!




11 thoughts on “The Full Buck Moon!

    1. Hey hey! Happy birthday! I hope it’s a great day! Maybe it’ll be made better with this, which should sort of act like a hummos recipe:

      Note: Adjust everything here to suit your taste.

      * 2 cups of chick peas (this is a good time to use canned. One can will do)
      * 1/2 cup of tahini
      * juice of one lemon
      * 2 garlic cloves, peeled and lightly chopped
      * 1 tablespoon of cumin or paprika (or a mix)
      * 1/4 cup or so of olive oil
      * enough water to help this puree (or maybe the goo from the canned beans)
      * parsley
      * salt and pepper

      Add everything to a food processor except for the water, the olive oil, and enough of the parsely to act as a topping afterward. Start it up, get things pureeing, and gradually add the olive oil and water until you like the texture. Add more of any of the seasonings until you like the taste. Top with the remaining parsley, and away you go. I find that it’s good right away, but if you’re giving it to guests, it’s better if you can let it sit for a day to mellow out.

      I usually use chick peas, but this time I followed this exact recipe, but used favas instead. I’ve also made it with cannelini, sage, extra pepper, and left out the lemon, tahini and cumin. There’s a lot of ways you can go.

      Lemme know what you think. I hope you like it. Happy birthday!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you! Wow, wow, wow! I just put it all in the food processor just now…. oh… did not have any tahini…but I substituted peanut butter and a bit of almond butter…. hope that works out… let’s see…time for a taste test…. needed more lemon and salt. This is delicious! Thank you! Thank you! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Great! I’m glad it worked! Yeah, I guess I could have mentioned substituting peanut butter. That works really well. I usually try to keep tahini on hand (it’s really great just mixed with a little water and then drizzled over a bowl of chickpeas, brown rice, bulgur, or millet, and leftover veggies. My two favorite variations on the main recipe are: 1) white beans, lots of sage, lots of black pepper, garlic, water, olive oil; and 2) the basic recipe but go half-and-half with the cumin and smoked paprika, maybe a little heavier on the smoked paprika. I usually add more than one lemon’s worth, too, but I don’t really use a recipe, so “eh… close enough.”

        I’m really glad you liked it. This is the place for all your sky watchin’ and food cookin’ needs. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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