The Best Shots of Biggest Full Moon in 2013

Picture of the supermoon from Connecticut-based photographer Scott Tully

Golden Moon

Photograph by Scott Tully, National Geographic Your Shot

The supermoon shines with a golden hue on June 23 in this image from Connecticut-based photographer Scott Tully.

In general, the most picturesque moments occur in the minutes after local sunset, when the moon rises above the horizon, and then again before sunrise, as the full moon rises or sets at the local horizon.

If you missed this year’s moon and plan to shoot next year, photo buffs recommend using a telephoto lens and composing the picture so that a distant landmark is silhouetted by the moon.

Picture of the June 23 supermoon over the Old Fortress of Corfu in Greece

Giant Yellow Moon

Photograph by Βασίλης Μεταλληνός, National Geographic Your Shot

If you looked at the full moon in this photo taken over the weekend at The Old Fortress of Corfu in Greece, and thought “That full moon seems bigger and brighter than normal,” you would have been correct.

The photo, snapped by Βασίλης Μεταλληνός, was submitted to National Geographic‘s Your Shot gallery as part of a weekend hashtag assignment called #supermoon.

On Sunday, our lunar neighbor made its closest approach to Earth for the 2013 calendar year, appearing eight percent larger and 17 percent brighter than usual. (Read the full story of this year’s supermoon.)

At its closest, the full moon clocked in at a distance of 221,824 miles (356,991 kilomters) from Earth. That’s a bit closer than the typical 226,179 mile (364,000 kilomter) distance.

But what a difference it made.

“We saw it from the field with fireflies and hay bales. It bleached out the stars,” tweeted one poetic fan.

Others used the supermoon as a way to reflect.

“My cat is sad because yesterday’s supermoon caused him to contemplate our galaxy’s vastness & his smallness within it,” tweeted @MySadCat.

Some also marked the occasion by taking photos of the moon in spots all over the world. Hundreds of you submitted your supermoon photos to National Geographic‘s Your Shot photo gallery. We’ve rounded up some of our favorites for your enjoyment but would love to see more. If you have a picture of the supermoon and would like to submit to to National Geographic’s Your Shot, our editors will consider adding it to this gallery. Please include the hashtag #supermoon.

Picture of the supermoon over Coverack, a fishing village in England

Coastal Moon

Photograph by Tom Robinson, National Geographic Your Shot

The supermoon hovers over Coverack (map), a fishing village in Cornwall, England on June 23.

Tides are highest during new and full moons—which means if a storm surge occurs during a new or full moon, then high coastal flooding may occur.

Picture of the supermoon behind a Ferris wheel in Turkey

Supermoon Carnival

Photograph by Abdullah Özgün, National Geographic Your Shot

The supermoon looms behind a Ferris wheel in Mudanya, Turkey (map). Photographers all over the world lined up to get their shots of the year’s biggest full moon.

Anthony Cook, an observer at Los Angeles’ Griffith Observatory, recommends looking for landmarks that can enhance an otherwise-ordinary shot of the moon.

“With a little planning, a distant landmark can add to the scene,” he says.

Picture of the full moon over the Arizona desert

Desert Moon

Photograph by David Rankin, National Geographic Your Shot

Seen from Page, Arizona (map), the full moon hangs over the desert.

A supermoon occurs almost every year—but a supermoon coinciding with the solstice does not. That celestial mashup only occurs every 14 years or so.

But if you thought a supermoon brings out “super-effects,” think again. There’s no connection between a supermoon and the possibility of a natural disaster.

“Supermoons have been happening for billions of years, and nothing particularly special occurs on these dates—except, of course, for a beautiful moon,” said Geza Gyuk, an astronomer at the Adler Planetarium in Chicago.

Picture of the supermoon over Poseidon’s temple in Greece

Grecian Moon

Photograph by Elias Chasiotis, National Geographic Your Shot

While lunar enthusiasts may have ooh-ed and ahh-ed at the night sky this weekend, the supermoon is not a rare event.

The full moon overlaps with perigee about once a year. Here, it’s pictured rising over the ancient temple of Poseidon in Greece on June 23.

However, because the moon’s own orbit varies slightly, each year’s supermoon also varies in its distance from Earth. Next year’s supermoon—on August 10, 2014—will be even more luminous than this year’s because the moon is expected to be even closer to Earth. (See pictures of last year’s supermoon.)

Picture of the supermoon over Mont Blanc in the Alps

Mont Blanc’s Moon

Photograph by A. Lwin, National Geographic Your Shot

The full moon rises above the cloud cover over Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in the Alps.

Due to the moon’s egg-shaped orbit, there are times when the moon is at perigee—the shortest distance away from Earth in the month-long lunar cycle. The term “supermoon” describes a full moon that coincides with perigee.

Courtesy : National Geographic


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