OCTOBER’S FULL MOON
October’s full moon is commonly called the Hunter’s Moon, harkening back to European and Native American traditions where hunters would use the light of the full moon to track down their prey and stock up for the coming winter.
Contrary to popular belief, the Hunter’s Moon isn’t actually bigger or brighter than usual. It simply rises earlier, soon after sunset, which would give hunters plenty of bright moonlight to hunt by during the early evenings. To Neo Pagans, however, the Hunter’s Moon is known by a far more morbid name – the Blood Moon.
Humans through the ages have always found autumn’s full moons to be creepy, and not without good reason. There’s a reason why English folks in the Middle Ages called October’s full moon the Blood Moon, and it’s the exact same reason why even Halloween imagery today often features a large, low-hanging moon with an eerie reddish glow. The Hunter’s Moon rises early in the evening, which means that you are more likely to see it near the horizon. When you observe the moon while it’s near the horizon, it gives off the illusion of being bigger while it’s in fact the same size. In addition, observing the moon at the horizon makes it look redder. This is because you’re seeing it through a thicker atmosphere, which scatters more blue light and lets more red light pass through to reach your eyes.