Anticrepuscular Rays

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We've all seen crepuscular rays, those dramatic beams of light and shadow which seem to radiate from the sun through the intervening clouds. These cloud shadows are actually parallel rays -- perspective makes them seem to converge on the sun. These rays sometimes cross the entire sky and re-converge on the antisolar point as seen in this photo. But these anticrepuscular rays are much fainter and much less frequently noticed than crepuscular rays; a distinct display like this one requires just the right amount of scattering particulates in the atmosphere. In this photo the rays pass in front of a gibbous moon.

Date: September 3, 2006
Time: 7:05 p.m. MST
Location: Coconino National Forest, Arizona
Camera: Olympus OM-1 35mm SLR on fixed tripod
Film: Fuji Provia 100 slide
Focal length: 24 mm
Aperture: f/4
Exposure time: 1/8 second
Scanner: Nikon Coolscan LS-2000


Revised: October 21, 2006
Copyright © 2006 Joe Orman
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