Super Full Moon in Store This Weekend for Portland, Oregon Coast
(Oregon Coast) - Not only will there be a full moon on Friday and Saturday night, but a magnificent and extra large one.
The scientific term is a perigee moon, but it's called by most the “Super Full Moon.” And super it will be, indeed. Perigee means the “closest to the Earth” along the moon's orbit, and thus people in northwest Oregon and the coast will be seeing a moon as much as 14 percent bigger and 30 percent brighter.
It also may affect tides a tad on the Oregon coast – but only by a tiny amount. (Above: the moon lights up Hug Point, near Cannon Beach)
Will Oregon residents be able to see it?
Definitely yes, for Portland. On the coast, it looks likely. For instance, the weather predictions for Cannon Beach indicate mostly cloudy on Friday night but mostly clear on Saturday night. This would likely translate to fairly frequent breaks in cloud cover on Friday night along the beaches, with the likelihood of cloud cover that is often thin enough to see through. Saturday night will likely have extended periods of clear visibility in the skies along the coast.
According to NASA, full moons actually vary in size because of the oval shape of the moon's orbit.
“The Moon follows an elliptical path around Earth with one side ('perigee') about 50,000 km closer than the other ('apogee'),” NASA said in an online article. “Full Moons that occur on the perigee side of the Moon's orbit seem extra big and bright.”
While it is technically a little bigger, is this something the average human will actually notice?
You may notice the brightness, NASA said, but it's tricky to tell whether it's bigger or not. (Above: a super harvest moon in 2010 in Portland).
NASA said perigee full moons bring a slightly extra high tide, called "perigean tides." But the agency cites data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration that indicates you will likely not notice this either, especially on the Oregon coast.
“In most places, lunar gravity at perigee pulls tide waters only a few centimeters (an inch or so) higher than usual,” NASA said. “Local geography can amplify the effect to about 15 centimeters (six inches) - not exactly a great flood.”
Low tides on the Oregon coast on Friday are around 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. High tides are approximately at 1 p.m. and at midnight. On Saturday, low tides are around 7:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m., with high tide at approximately 1 p.m.
As a side note, the early morning low tides will be quite spectacular – among the lowest of the year – at around minus one foot and a half to almost minus two feet. These different greatly from area to area along the Oregon coast so check the Oregon coast weather page and click on the individual weather page links for whatever city you're looking for.
Below: video of a super harvest moon in 2010.
Below: Moonrise over Yachats
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