The game says the lighting is 'bright' in the middle of the night

I checked and I don’t have anything that’s giving me any source of light, unless the moon is so bright I can read at 11 PM.
I don’t have any sort of CBM that would help with this (or any at all, really), and I don’t have any light source activated, nor do I have a lit fire. Absolutely nothing gives any indication that there is anything light generating nearby.
Despite this, while the view is dark and limited like one would expect, it’s not as bad as it normally is either. Even if the game implemented moon cycles making some amount of light at night, not even a full moon should be able to let me read with no hinderance.
If I go back inside, then the game acknowledges the darkness, but not outside. I haven’t seen this happen before thus far, I’ve always been limited to ‘dark’ lighting level in this kind of situation.

That, it can happen sometimes with thunder too, but that last just for a turn, as opposed with the moon and a clear sky

As @Ragno said, it’s probably a full moon night (or near to) and clear sky.

Why not? I’m a night owl and work in my garden at night, usually with the moon as my only light source. Full moon light lets me easily read a description and do other stuff.

… Some googling later I found a good comparison: A candle at 2 meter (~6.5 feet) distance is approximately as bright as a full moon.

That wouldn’t be “bright” light. That would most certainly be dim.

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Don’t forget that humans used candles for a long period of time to dine, read/write, work and even patrol at night, where torches were deemed to dangerous/impractical/indecent or expensive. Oil (/petrol) lamps came much later in time.
If a candle is the only existing light source, it is bright (enough) and does shine for a long distance.

Besides, the game only differentiates between 5 light levels: very dark, dark, shady, cloudy and bright (and theoretically “extremely bright”, like flashbangs etc., but it’s still just “bright”).
It can’t be “cloudy”, as that would cause some confusion given that it’s a clear sky.
Also, anything other than “bright” (even just cloudy) will slow you down while reading.

Assuming a standard start date, the moon is FULL on day 75. During days 70-80 the moon will provide enough light to read by (a portion of that time it will be ‘dim’ light and provide slower reading). I covered the other advantages here:

Cataclysm Quick Tip #64 - Full Moon + Clear Sky = Easy Loot


Oh thanks for posting this. I had the idea that nights were just sometimes brighter in the summer because I often start new characters near that date range and so I went to test that before I replied in this thread and used a world with day 90 as the start date and couldn’t figure out why waiting several days I couldn’t find any bright nights.

So in short: That’s a good tip, thanks.