11 August 2011

SkyWatch Friday: anti-crepuscular rays, storm clouds, rainbows

Here in the clear mountain air of southwest Montana, crepuscular rays are fairly common--good old sun rays like those common most everywhere:

But we also see anticrepuscular rays fairly often (usually at sunset), rays that stream away from the sun and seem to converge on an infinitely distant horizon point:

The past week has also brought incredible sunsets (maybe there are forest fires west of us?):

Even looking east is colorful most nights:

And there are lots of great clouds beginning with the cumulus that puff up in mid- to late-afternoon:

Leading to evening thunderstorms:

And of course to rainbows (this is a double arc, albeit the higher one if faint):

August in Butte Montana: it's not heaven, but you can see it from here.


eileeninmd said...

Beautiful Montana skies. Your photos are wonderful. Happy skywatching!

Veronica Wald said...

I KNEW there was some reason why we want to move to Montana!
I had not known the technical explanation for what I call Sunday School Jesus rays (a comment on certain forms of religious art, not on Christianity), thanks for the link, and the wonderful photos.

Pretty Life Online said...

great shots for skywatch... Have a great weekend ahead!!! Hoping you can visit my skywatch entry too.

Magical Mystical Teacher said...

I like your comment that you can see heaven from Butte!


Sky above and earth below—
Onward on my way I go;
Earth below and sky above—
I am satisfied, my love.

© 2011 by Magical Mystical Teacher

Cemetery Sky

Oakland Daily Photo said...

Yow, that vermillion sky is incredible.

Arija said...

It may not be heaven but it certainly is heavenly!

secret agent woman said...

I have always called them God rays - they remind me of those religious cards with Jesus against a sky backdrop and rays shooting from him.

I've been seeing a lot of rainbows lately - we've had a rainy summer.

Anonymous said...

What an amazing week of skies!

Rocky said...

Very nice photography.

The skies were beautiful in Butte. I can remember the reds and the greens that I have never seen elsewhere in my travels of the world. I really like that rare bluish-green that you see in Butte after a rain storm. I haven't seen that anywhere else.

I did get into Butte recently and visited my Fraternity brother, Pete Knudson in his office at Tech. I enjoyed myself there.

Tatjana Parkacheva said...

Very nice scenes.


Merri said...

wow! the sky's on fire!
- The Equestrian Vagabond

Judy said...

Never heard of anticrepuscular rays before! You are just trying to challenge my typing, aren't you?
Love the sunsets, both east and west versions!!

Anonymous said...

Wow - what stunning shots!

Arija said...

Fabulous skies and the smoke enhanced red is stunning. The last shot I found to be particularly interesting with the low arc of the rainbow. I had never seen that particular phenomenon until two days ago on our long drive to Melbourne (700km) where we encountered six rainbows and one like this.