September 13, 2010


Last year I had the impressive experience of noticing an anthelion while flying over the wet fields of Tuscany, short before landing. An anthelion is a sort of a circle around a shadow (most commonly, the airplane's) with the colors of the rainbow.

Yesterday, it was one of those days in which the sky is a gift. While driving back to Munich, I could not stopped admiring the yellows and grays, up on the sky. I saw a vertical cirrus cloud, which I had never seen before.

But the highlight was a parhelion or "sundog", two short parts of an incomplete halo around the sun, which might look as two little suns or rather, like yesterday, two little rainbows.

Unfortunately, due to the circumstances I couldn't take a proper picture of it, but it look quite similar to this one here, just rise up the sun and cover everything with gray clouds. Pretty amazingly pretty! It was sort of a game, since at some point one of the sides of the halo disappeared, or became stronger/weaker, etc.

I was not aware of parhelia, since it is not on my Cloud Collector's Handbook, so it was "my own" discovery. According to Wikipedia, Aristotle noticed it before me some time ago. Uh, always these wise Greeks!

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