It’s the perfect time of year to grab a glimpse of the full moon in the great outdoors of Northern California. The Strawberry moon, named by the the Algonquin tribes because of the fruit’s harvest season, is known as the last of the spring season and one of the most colorful of the year. Although it’s not known as a “supermoon,” it will still shine bright as it takes a low, shallow path across the sky.
On June 5th and 6th, the full moon will peak over sky, hitting it’s brightest at 3:12 am on Saturday. In some portions of the world (not NorCal), there will be a partial penumbral lunar eclipse, that you can watch on a livestream here.
This moon marks the end of the spring in NorCal and the transition into the hot days of summer. How would you like to see the celestial event? Here are some places that would be perfect to see it in Northern California:
Lassen Volcanic National Park
The best place to see any celestial event in NorCal might be a nighttime hike to the top of Lassen Peak. But with snow covering the mountain, that’s impossible tonight. But there are still many options in the park to get a good view.
Manzanita Lake and Lake Helen will surely provide some picturesque reflection photography opportunities. Also, a view of Brokeoff Mountain with shooting stars will certainly be breathtaking. No matter where you go in the park, Lassen is known as a great place to go stargazing.
If you can find a place around the lake to escape the city lights, there’s nothing like experiencing a full moon over Lake Tahoe. Maybe the best place to find the best night sky is the Emerald Bay State Park, but anywhere in the higher altitudes above the lake will give you great views.
There are SO MANY places to see the full moon above Mount Shasta. As you ascend into the higher elevations, the moon will certainly feel much bigger and brighter than in the valley. If you head up to Bunny Flats you should be able to see the stars bigger and brighter than anywhere in NorCal.
You’ll have a great view if you sit on the beach of Siskiyou Lake, watching the moon as it hovers above Mount Shasta with a reflection on the lake. Also, a nighttime winter hike to Heart Lake could be incredible. To be quite honest, anywhere near Mount Shasta City seems like a winner in this scenario.
Whiskeytown National Recreation Area
We’ve documented the wonderful adventure of kayaking on Whiskeytown Lake during the full moon, and this occasion might prove to be an even better experience for a night on the water. You can always get on a boat (if you have access to one), grab a kayak or go to Brandy Creek. Another option would be to hike up to the top of Shasta Bally to have an overhead view of the super moon floating over the lake. So many options here…
Yosemite National Park
*Note: Only people with previously reserved permits can visit Yosemite due to Covid-19
Although Yosemite can become packed with visitors during the summer, there is plenty of room to enjoy a night sky. The park still stays far away from city lights and can give you one heck of a show during the meteor shower.
Take NorCal’s most beautiful landmark (and The Eighth Wonder of the World) and put a a meteor shower above it – enough said. Watch it from the rocks below the majestic waterfall or get an overhead view from the trailhead above. Either way this opportunity is too great to pass up.
Northern California’s Outdoor Digital Newsmagazine