Tonight's super-sized supermoon will be biggest in 70 years

It won't come this close to Earth again until 2034
Posted at 3:47 PM, Nov 03, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-13 17:33:58-05

SAN DIEGO -- Skywatchers brace yourselves this month for a supermoon so big and so bright, you'll have to wait nearly 20 years to see another like it. 

How big and bright? NASA said Nov.14th's supermoon could be 30 percent brighter and 14 percent bigger than other supermoons. 

That's because during this extra special event the moon will become full within about two hours of perigee, or the point in the moon's orbit when it's nearest to our planet, "arguably making it an extra supermoon," NASA said. 

Not only is this extra special supermoon the closest it will be to Earth this year, it's also the closest it has been since 1948 and the closest it will be until November 25, 2034. 

The term "supermoon" entered popular consciousness only in recent years, NASA said, and simply refers to a full moon that is closer to Earth than average. 

Even though the supermoon will be an exceptional sight, scientists warn that its brightness can be masked by cloud cover and the glare of urban lights. 

That's why we've gathered a short list of great places in San Diego County to moon-watch. Enjoy!

  • Palomar Mountain's Observatory Campground | Directions: Take Interstate 15 south to Highway 76. Drive east on Highway 76 for about 22 miles to County Road S6 (South Grade Road), which winds for seven miles to the top of Palomar Mountain in the Cleveland National Forest in northern San Diego County. Turn left onto Canfield Road for 2.5 miles to the Observatory Campground entrance on the right.
  • Anza Borrego Desert State Park | From California Department of Park and Recreation: The Park is located on the eastern side of San Diego County, with portions extending east into Imperial County and north into Riverside County. It is about a two-hour drive from San Diego, Riverside, and Palm Springs. Many visitors approach from the east or west via Highways S22 and 78. From the coast, these highways descend from the heights of the Peninsular range of mountains with spectacular views of the great bowl of the Colorado Desert. Highway S2 enters the park from the south off of Interstate 8.
  • Torrey Pines State Reserve | Don't have hours to drive out east? Try this convenient spot north of La Jolla. It's not as dark, but it's quite beautiful and if you park near the ocean, you can moon-gaze until 11 p.m. Address: 12600 N Torrey Pines Rd, La Jolla, CA 92037.