Full moon shines just before fall equinox


PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – We were starting to get used to the clouds and rain around here! It only stuck around for a few days but it was a welcoming sight for a lot of Oregonians and Washingtonians.

With clouds departing the valley today, it is just in time to celebrate a full moon. There will be more clouds to the north in areas of southwest Washington this afternoon, which may hang around in the evening too.

Most clouds dissipating today to leave us with a full sky of blue. Check out the satellite loop of the clearing clouds this afternoon. Even the high thin clouds trying to roll in are dissipating before reaching the Willamette Valley. This is a great sign for those of you that want to check out the full moon tonight.

The Harvest Moon is considered to be the last full moon of summer or the first full moon of autumn. This time around, it happens to be the last full moon of the summer season. It’s also the closest full moon to the autumnal equinox, which arrives on Wednesday.

You may also hear about the September full moon as the Corn Moon. There are a lot of nicknames for this moon that represent this time of the season. Regardless, it’s going to be a pleasant night to check it out.

You can start as early as the 8 p.m. window as the night sky starts to darken. All you have to do is square up to the southeast and look for that moon of ours.

Weather models have visibility in the green for tonight. Potentially a few passing clouds aloft for folks out near The Dalles, but we aren’t expecting much to block out the moon.

Clear viewing for the Oregon coast and the Willamette Valley tonight. Find a vantage point that allows you to check out the lower horizon and you will be able to watch the moon earlier in the night. I do want to point out that there may be some clouds rolling in for the morning. Potentially some patchy fog for some locations of the coast. This may restrict the viewing in the morning hours. It will be better to take photos of the moon in the night sky than the early morning sky. This seems to be more of an issue south of Portland, with clouds developing from Lincoln City to Salem.

Temperatures are going to be floating around the mid 50s late tonight. There may be a light wind coming out of the north through the valley. You may need to bundle up if you’re going out to photograph this full moon. Temperatures a few degrees cooler out near Baker City or over near Pendleton tonight. Temperatures drop to the lower 50s by the early morning. We have some communities in the 40s, but most stay above that mark this time around. You could say it will feel like fall in the morning.

With that, we may as well check the counter for our upcoming events. Autumnal equinox arrives Wednesday at 12:20 p.m., which feels right on time this year (based on current weather conditions). We only have a handful of days left where temperatures may still hit the 80s. I would be ready for more 70s and 60s in the coming weeks. Halloween is right around the corner too, which is when the rain typically turns on in full-force.

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