5 Facts About the First Day Of Fall
The Northern Hemisphere’s autumnal equinox, also known as the first day of Fall, began Monday, September 22, 2014 at 9:29 PM CST.
Autumn is quite a popular season, known for the colorful foliage and crisp days, and pumpkin spice everything.
But have you ever wondered what causes the seasons to change?
— Gabriel Z (@gabez141) October 10, 2014
Here are 5 facts about the first day of Fall.
1) National Geographic News says the “clearly definable” position of the sun on the summer and winter solstices accurately defines the equinox. Solstices are measured as the northernmost point that the sun rises along the horizon in June and the southernmost point along the horizon in December. Since the equinoxes fall roughly halfway between the solstices, they got pegged as the starts of the other two seasons, Fall and Spring
2) The melting and freezing of Arctic sea ice also indicates the start of the autumnal equinox. You could see the sun skim across the horizon, signaling the start of six months of darkness if you were in the North Pole.
3) On the first full day of Fall, there are 12 hours of light as well as 12 hours of darkness. According to the Farmer’s Almanac, “On the equinoxes, the very center of the Sun sets just 12 hours after it rises. But the day begins when the upper edge of the Sun reaches the horizon (which happens a bit before the center rises), and it doesn’t end until the entire Sun has set.”
4) There are worldwide traditions centered on the event. Pagans celebrate Mabon during the autumnal equinox, which involves taking a few moments to honor the changing seasons and celebrate the second harvest.
5) Most people will have blocked views of the autumnal equinox, meaning they will never see the full 12 hours of sunup and sundown because of hills, mountains or trees blocking their views of the flat horizon.
What’s your favorite part of Fall?