SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — A natural phenomenon known as the moon or winter halo lit up the San Francisco Bay Area skies Sunday evening, triggering an avalanche of social media posts and photos.
Researchers say the display is a ring with an apparent radius of approximately 22° around the moon and is formed as direct sunlight or moonlight is refracted in millions of hexagonal ice crystals suspended in the atmosphere.
It occurs several times a year, Sunday night’s moon was particularly stunning. It was not only seen in the Bay Area skies, but across the country.
While it’s unrelated, the National Weather Service tweeted Sunday — “Going to be up late tonight? If so, you may want to check out the partial lunar eclipse, which will peak at 1:42 a.m. early Monday morning. Thin high clouds overnight may obscure views of the moon to some extent, but the partial eclipse should still be visible.”
— ZoomCris (@zoomcris) November 30, 2020
Hello from the Bay Area, CA. Our waxing Moon tonight in 36° frost. pic.twitter.com/9PoGa1Grxp
— Maia ♌ Urban Shaman | Injustice Warrior (@MsSpiritArt) November 30, 2020
A moon halo tonight. pic.twitter.com/OqA1TA3Dkr
— CathleenSchine (@cathleenschine) November 30, 2020
— DiDi (@JudithKryztals) November 30, 2020
Tonight's moon is a very strange one. I definitely feel like something is looking back at me. pic.twitter.com/jeY2SQNWrx
— Hyper Vonteki (@Egguzeid) November 30, 2020
there’s a ring around the moon pic.twitter.com/L7gKIKjvUc
— priscila⁷𖧵☻ soobin day (@swagbot911) November 30, 2020
This halo around the moon is insane pic.twitter.com/2NzkI5AsqT
— Amber Hinojosa (@ambiesthoughts) November 30, 2020
— Alex Tardy Skiwxman (@SanDiegoWCMwx) November 30, 2020
Enormous 22° lunar halo and full beaver moon as seen tonight over Fitchburg, MA. 🌕 pic.twitter.com/pvLNOLjUV3
— Greg Forrister (@GregForrister) November 30, 2020