When to See the Wolf Moon in January
The January Full Moon, sometimes referred to as the Wolf Moon, will hit the northeastern horizon on Monday, January 17 at 6:51 PM East Coast Time. The moon will be full for three nights from Sunday to Wednesday.
If you want to know the exact times of moonrise and moonset where you are, check out this awesome farmer / web developer moon calculator at The Farmer’s Almanac.
Why the January full moon is called the “wolf moon”
There are no official names for the full moon for this month. The UN official names for satellites are derived from Native American, Colonial American and European sources, and tend to refer to the entire lunar cycle, so the name is longer throughout the month than the moon itself.
The January moon is called the wolf moon because wolves are most often heard in late January – early February, their breeding season.
(A note on howling wolves: According to National Geographic , wolves don’t actually howl when the moon is full. They howl all the time, day and night, for a variety of reasons. because people are more likely to be outside at night on a full moon, and therefore more likely to hear wolves howling.)
Other names for the January full moon
Like all moons, January has a variety of names taken from different places and times, including Moon after Yule (I think I understand that), Old Moon, Ice Moon (of course), Snow Moon (understood), and Cold Moon or the harsh moon. My favorite alternate moon names for January are Frosty Exploding Moon, Central Moon ( from the Assiniboin people of the Northern Great Plains, so named because it is the middle of the cold season) and Christ, It’s Cold. Out Moon ”that I just came up with.
My sources assure me that there will be a full moon in February too. Follow the news!