Kawuneeche atmospherics

© Richard H. Hahn

Kawuneeche atmospherics

Uploaded: February 01, 2004


f9.5, 1/125 sec., ISO 100, aperture priority, lens focal length 20mm., 02/01/2004, 9:10 AM, a very rare upside down rainbow, on the wrong side of the sun. The sun is shining through the forest at the bottom of the image. Ice crystals in sky. No wind. Photo taken at Kawuneeche Visitors' Center, RMNP, near Grand Lake, CO.


Leonard Pierce February 02, 2004

Great image and perspective, Richard! You're right about the ice crystals but I think your rainbow is being caused by the sunlight bouncing back on them by that reflective ball at the top of the flagpole.That's the exact pattern you get from light reflecting off a globe. Pretty neat image though!! #93666

Richard H. Hahn February 02, 2004

Hi Len,
Thanks for your kind comments. Flagpole ball was in the shade, so it was not the source of any reflection. Also, the rainbow was thousands of feet above. As high as the thin clouds and mountain peaks around. Am uploading a second photo without the distracting flagpole and trees. I'm not surprised this photo is controversial. I've never seen an atmospheric like this before in my 52 years. #358839

Leonard Pierce February 02, 2004

WOW! Now thats truely amazing - I've never seen anything like that either. Sorry Richard, I stand corrected!! #358925

Richard H. Hahn February 02, 2004

No apology necessary. Fortunately, I wasn't the only person to see this rare phenomenon. The national park rangers at the Kawuneeche Visitors' Center saw the upside down rainbow, too. (Several took photos on film cameras.)

So, this is a good lesson for me! #1...I immediately archived the raw photos from the shoot. (Might need the whole set of pixels someday to verify the autheticity of this.)

#2...I shouldn't have tried to be so "artistic" with the silly flagpole and ball. Turned out to be the most compelling picture, but because the flagpole ball is centered, it raises questions. (I'd question it too, had I not seen it with my own eyes.

#3...I will always remember to take a few steps left, right, forward and backward to get a different perspective of the subject. I am uploading one more photo that I took a few minutes later. No flagpole and no sun starburst, but a straight view of the treetops and rare rainbow (on the wrong side of the sun.)

Thanks for your kind and courteous feedback. #358940

Richard H. Hahn February 16, 2004

When I saw this rare atmospheric, I didn't know its name. Now, after researching the subject of rare sun halos, this atmospheric is called a circumzenithal arc. There are more photos, website links and a documentation of this event elsewhere in my photo gallery. #381213

Damian P. Gadal March 18, 2004

Very nice! #430196

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