Mark your calendars for the December Full Moon this year. The Full Cold Moon in 2023 will be the last full moon of 2023 on the calendar.
A full moon occurs when the Earth is directly between the Sun and Moon so that the moon looks completely illuminated when you look at it. It happens about once a month or, 29.53 days on average.
Ready to learn about the upcoming December 2023 Full Moon? Dive into the moon’s nicknames and other facts below.
The dates and times provided by NASA in the United States Eastern Time (ET) account for both Eastern Standard Time (EST) and Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) for part of the year in the United States. Also below is the Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) time. This was previously referred to as Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). Since you may be in a different time zone, the exact dates may shift slightly for your calendar.
Mark your calendar for December 2023’s Full Cold Moon
This year, December’s full moon will be on Tuesday, December 26, 2023 (EST) or Wednesday, December 27 (UTC). The upcoming Full Cold Moon is appropriately named as it will occur right after Christmas.
When is the full moon in December?
In 2023, the Full Cold Moon will be on Tuesday December 26, 2023 at 7:33 PM EST or December 27, 2023 at 12:33 AM UTC. The December 26th full moon will be the thirteenth and last full moon of 2023 and the full moon in Cancer.
The name of the December 2023 Full Moon
One name for the names for the December 26th full moon is the Full Cold Moon. It’s a name that doesn’t come as a surprise and one you may have guessed. The Full Cold Moon is a fitting name for a moon, given how the temperatures get colder with the official start of Winter.
Another nickname for the December Full Moon is the Long Nights Moon, another equally fitting given December has the shortest day of the year.
A final nickname for the full moon is the Oak Moon.
Which season is the December Full Moon in?
The December 2023 Full Moon will be the first full moon of Winter 2023-2024 as the first full moon after the Winter Solstice.
The Winter Solstice marks the beginning of astronomical winter and the end of astronomical autumn in the Northern Hemisphere.
In 2023, Winter begins with the Winter Solstice on Thursday, December 21st (December 22nd UTC). It will end with the Spring equniox on 2024 on Tuesday, March 19th (March 20th UTC).
Depending on the year, the Full Cold Moon can either be the last full moon of Autumn or occur just after the start of Winter. In 2023, the December Full Moon is part of the Winter season.
When is the New Cold Moon this year?
In 2023, the lunar cycle of the December Full Moon will begin with its new moon on Tuesday, December 12, 2023 at 6:32 PM EST or 11:32 PM UTC. The December 12th new moon will also be the last new moon of 2023, and will be the new moon in Sagittarius.
Also interesting to note for 2023, this will be one of the few new moon-full moon cycles that will be in the same month.
Will there be a full supermoon in December 2023?
No, the full moon in December 2023 will not be a full supermoon, as it will be more than 360,000 kilometers away during the peak of the full moon. The year will have 2 supermoons in August and 2 additional full supermoons.
A full supermoon is a full moon that nearly coincides with the closest point that the Moon comes to the Earth in its orbit, called perigee. The moon has a larger-than-usual appearance when you look at it. There isn’t an official definition for how close the moon must be to the Earth to be considered a supermoon. Depending on the version you use, the moon needs to be approximately 360,000 kilometers from the Earth or closer.
Will there be a December lunar eclipse this year?
No, a lunar eclipse will not occur during the full moon in December 2023. During the year, there will be two lunar eclipses. The May Full Moon had a penumbral lunar eclipse, and there will be a partial lunar eclipse during the October Full Moon.
December 2023 Moon Phases
Below are the moon phases for December 2023, including the new moon, first quarter, full moon, and last quarter. The date and times are for the United States Eastern Time Zone and UTC.
|Lunar Phase||US Eastern Date & Time||UTC Date & Time|
|December Last Quarter||December 5, 2023 12:49 AM EST||December 5, 2023 5:49 AM UTC|
|December New Moon||December 12, 2023 6:32 PM EST||December 12, 2023 11:32 PM UTC|
|December First Quarter||December 19, 2023 1:39 PM EST||December 19, 2023 6:39 PM UTC|
|December Full Moon||December 26, 2023 7:33 PM EST||December 27, 2023 12:33 AM UTC|
Frequently Asked Questions
Have additional questions about the December Full Moons? Here are a few of the frequently asked questions to help you.
In 2023, there will be one full moon in December. The December Full Moon will be on Tuesday December 26, 2023 at 7:33 PM EST or December 27, 2023 at 12:33 AM UTC. There are other years with 2 full moons, with the second called a blue moon, but not for 2023.
And if you’re looking for when the full moon occurs for the rest of the year, check out these future full moon calendars.
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