Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Sun pillar at sunrise

Sun pillar 
 This morning brought no new snow, which is almost a rarity this week.  The morning also brought something else unexpected—a sun pillar. Sometime in the past I know I posted another photo of a sun plilar, but I can’t find it at the moment or I’d include the link to it.

 This morning I also find myself indecisive. I can’t decide which photo I like the best, so rather than pick just one I’ll post all three of the ones I liked best.
Sun pillars are also called light pillars.  They can be above or below the sun and are longest and brightest at sunrise and sunset.  They are caused by ice crystals and aren’t vertical rays of the sun at all.  Moon pillars are also possible, though I find them even less common than sun pillars.  And as I’m not very good with nighttime photography, I’ve never gotten a photo of one of those.


Countryside Tales said...

Great capture :-)

Scott said...

Wow! Neat! I've never seen a sun/light pillar! Thanks for sharing. And, for what it's worth, I like the second image best because of the contrasting lighting and the colors.

Carolyn H said...

Countryside-thanks! I don't get to see these too often. it was a surprise to me this morning, that's for sure!

Carolyn H said...

Scott: I think I like the second one best, too, but I still keep changing my mind. Although I've seen photos of sun pillars in a cloudless sky, I think I've only seen them with a low cloud near the sun at sunrise or sunset.

Sharkbytes said...

I love sun pillars. Pictures of several at MQD. Saw my first one at sunset a couple months ago, but was on the freeway and it was almost gone by the time I could find a safe place to stop.