A common lunar puzzle involves the timing of moonrise. Folks who enjoy the outdoors and the wonders of nature may wish to commit to memory the words on the chart below.
- Moonrise (and, incidentally, the time of high tide) occurs about 50 minutes later each day than the day before.
- To determine the time of moonrise for each day of the month, just add 50 minutes for each day after a phase or subtract 50 minutes for each day prior to a new phase.
- The new Moon is invisible because it is approximately between Earth and the Sun, so the dark half of the Moon is facing us and the sunlit half is facing the Sun. (Sometimes, the new Moon is directly in front of the Sun, in which case we'd see a solar eclipse.)
- One or two days after the date of the new Moon, we can see it in the western sky as a thin crescent setting just after sunset.
- In following the chart below, care must be taken when using the terms Moon and midnight. These are affected by adjustments for daylight saving time and to a lesser degree by one's longitude in a particular time zone. (Sunrise and sunset, of course, are definitive times regardless of people's tamperings with the clock.)
- Since the Moon has no light of its own but merely reflects sunlight, we see a full Moon rise in the east when the Sun is setting in the west.
|The new Moon always rises near sunrise|
|And the first quarter near noon.|
|The full Moon always rises near sunset|
|And the last quarter near midnight.|
Get your local Moon rise and set times on the Almanac Moon page.
See our monthly Moon Phase Calendar–customized to YOUR location.