Sundog over the Blue Ridges, 10-30-2010
Blowing Rock, NC.
A sun dog or sundog (scientific name parhelion from Greek parēlion, (παρήλιον), παρά(beside) + ήλιος(sun), "beside the sun"; also called a mock sun) is an atmospheric phenomenon that creates bright spots of light in the sky, often on a luminous ring or halo on either side of the sun. Sundogs may appear as a colored patch of light to the left or right of the sun, 22° distant and at the same distance above the horizon as the sun, and in ice halos. Halos form when light from the sun or moon is refracted by ice crystals associated with thin, high-level clouds (like cirrostratus clouds).
© Yulia Basova
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