New Moon this Weekend Sunday May 20

Kim just posted shots of the Super Moon fifteen days ago. Stumbling around in the dark to get that shot can be a trial but her shots make it worth it.

But there is another moon out there that doesn’t get as much glory as the full moon and that is the new moon. That’s when the moon is right on top of the sun so you cannot even see it. So how do you take a photo? The trick is to get out there before sunrise when the sliver of a fingernail moon rises before the sun. It can be just as cool as the full moon and since no one usually even notices it since it is pretty much impossible to see once the sun is up, it makes it that more special.

The details:

Thursday morning May 17 moonrise 3:18  AM 14% of moon left, sunrise at 5:17 AM

Friday morning May 18 moonrise 3:47 AM 8% of moon left, sunrise at 5:16 AM

Saturday morning moonrise 4:18 AM 4% of moon left, sunrise at 5:16 AM

On Sunday the new moon rises just after the sun so no way can you see it. Now here is the killer. The moon moves around quite a bit where it rises during the month. This weekend that little sliver will be rising right between the twin towers of Thacher if you set up out on Good Harbor Beach on the bridge end. Get out out there. Low tide is at 4:30 AM on Friday. You could get a nice shot across the wet sand to the towers. Too far inland or at the other end of GHB and the moon rises behind the headland.

Saturday morning with only 4% left will be tough to shoot. The sun will be up and you’ll have a very small window to photograph it. Friday morning may be epic. And if you get the shot on Thursday and Friday you will be warmed up for exactly where the moon will be on Saturday. Very few people ever see the sliver of moon the day before a new moon.

Rubber Duck Quick Tip: the minutes tick off and where is the damn moon? Just a wee bit of fog or moisture will obscure the faint fingernail as the twilight starts brightening the sky. I’ve often missed the moonrise then picked it up when it is five moon diameters above the horizon. If you roll out of bed and hear the fog horn just go back to bed.

For the super serious: bring a compass. The moon rises at 76, 70, then 66 degrees on Thur, Frid, Sat, respectively. For the non serious, that would be east.

For the super super serious, download The Photographers Ephemeris and map your location. It’s free.


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