Hello! I hope you have been well and are enjoying the season.
If you read through our December nature prompts then you know that my kids are excited to go on a full moon walk on Christmas night. Are you planning on going too? It doesn’t have to be a long walk or a walk in the woods (although that would really be an extra special experience). You can have lots of fun walking around right in your neighborhood.
Whether this month has been extra busy for you or you have been enjoying a relaxed pace, a family night walk is lots of fun and is a perfect way to celebrate the season. And this month’s full moon is an extra special one. A full moon hasn’t occurred on Christmas since 1977 and won’t again until 2034.
The December full moon is referred to in the Northern hemisphere as the “cold moon” or “long night moon”. No explanation needed there. You can find a list of all the full moon names for both hemispheres at EarthSky if you’re interested.
If you do go on a moon-lit walk , whether it’s on pavement or on a trail, make sure you are prepared (and we’re talking walk, not hike):
- Dress in layers. If it’s winter make sure you have your inner and mid layers on. Wear a waterproof/resistant coat. Have your hat, mittens, and scarf or other face cover on. Don’t forget your warm socks and boots (with good traction if you’ve had snow).
- Bring a flashlight or headlamp. You may not need it but it’s good to have for safety reasons. Red flashlights are great for night walks because you can illuminate the trail but your eyes will remain adjusted to the darkness.
- Know where the trail goes before heading out.
- Wear some reflective gear and consider wearing a bell to be even more noticeable.
- Be aware of traffic and always walk facing oncoming traffic.
- Wearing your blaze orange on the trails and in the woods during hunting season can’t hurt.
And here’s a list of books to enjoy reading together before your adventure:
- I Took the Moon for a Walk by Carolyn Curtis
- Explore My World Nighttime by Jill Esbaum
- When the Moon is Full by Penny Pollock
- Walk When the Moon is Full by Frances Hamerstrom
- Night Time by Usborne (a board book)
- Once Upon a Northern Night by Jean Pendziwol
- Owl Moon by Jane Yolen
I do hope you make it out for a night walk this month. I’d love to know if you do.
This will be the last post of 2015 but you can still follow along on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram where I share resources and snippets of our nature finds. To start off the new year we’ll be sharing a fun nature story project and how identify conifers. We can hardly wait…
Wishing you a holiday season full of love and laughter and a very happy New Year!