Like buses…two posts at once!

Hello again

Well, no excuses from me. I thought that I’d have the opportunity to do a blog come the weekend but seems that I have become rather busy, so here I am again, with a blog which contains a few different bits and bobs in that I thought you may like. I have loads of pictures as I couldn’t choose which to post, so you could call it a bumper crop…excuse the pun.

Against my better nature, I have had to do a teeny bit on manipulation (mainly smoothing oput digital noise) on a few images. Honesty is the best policy but the results were rather good, so I’m hoping that you forgive me for it and congratulate my honesty. Or something. As I type this, about to add the images, I have had a very apt mp3 come on “Shakedown – At Night”…kind of fitting for the first batch of photos that were taken….at night.

Although I can’t remember the exact reason, it appears to be one of those times I just decided to take drive and it ended in Goodwick, next stop Rosslare, Ireland…well, Strumble Head first in a straight line, but that’s splitting hairs. I had the tripod, so thought I’d fiddle with some settings and see what happened….

A full moon and moondog over North Pembrokeshire

A full moon and moondog over North Pembrokeshire

As you can see, a full moon and small town (Old Fishguard) make for some good reflections and, I think it might be, a moondog on the thin cloud just below the moon. Same principle as a sun dog but at night. Nice capture. Further around the coast now, towards north Pembrokeshire and the old Fishguard Harbour…

No need for a flash when there is a full moon to provide all the light you need

No need for a flash when there is a full moon to provide all the light you need

The cloud was coming and going as you can see in the pictures as we had been having some heft showers that days it looks like but the trip was well rewarded in the end by a lunar halo. Check out this bad boy (as with all images, please click on them to see the full resolution versions, these are but large thumbnails)…

A lunar 22 degree halo...portent of bad weather?

A lunar 22 degree halo…portent of bad weather?

The technical term is actually a 22 degree halo but that is a bit of a mouthful. Incoming science!! Those who have stuck with me might have seen the solar (sun) version of this many posts back but both are formed the same way, light is refracted in millions of randomly oriented hexagonal ice crystals hanging way up high. In days of old, moon rings were are said to warn of approaching storms or bad weather. The reason was that, over time, people realised that they appear when the sky is covered by thin cirrus family clouds (like mares tales) that often come a few days before a large weather front. However, the same clouds can also occur entirely randomly, making a halo unreliable as a sign of bad weather.

On to clouds that are just pretty now, for no other reason that I liked the colour, shape and effect the still water in puddles had on the image. This was taken when it was VERY cold, so rather than water, these clouds are more likely ice….

Icy water in the air...icy water on the ground

Icy water in the air…icy water on the ground

Next, a cloud ray shadow, or rather as some in the weather spotting fraternity would call it, a “crown ray”. Reason being, as you can see below, the sun is directly behind a big thick cloud giving a shadow from behind that creates a crown, instead of the light coming through and creating the familiar crepuscular ray (have I lost any of you yet?!). Nice.

A very pretty golden "crown ray"

A very pretty golden “crown ray”

Now, further on in the year, one of those storm clouds that has a mix of clouds in it that creates weird colours, shadows and shapes. I love these. I have stuff like this on my PC as wallpapers as pictures of these kind of clouds make them look different from different angles every way you look at it if you were there in person. I don’t think that much came of this particular bumpy bit but it is a nice example…no prizes for storm chasing on this occasion though…

OK, so it's no masterpiece...but look carefully at the blues, greens and greys, not to mention the rays lighting the top

OK, so it’s no masterpiece…but look carefully at the blues, greens and greys, not to mention the rays lighting the top

Further on, more cold weather and the clouds created above the chimneys in Pembroke and Milford Haven where the refineries are located. No massive science here. As I am sure you are all aware, warm air rising into cold is going cause condensation, that’s what warm air does…same thing applies to aircraft engines, hence condensation trails. If it is nice and clear as well as still, you get a big lump of warm cloud sat there and, on these occasions, the said lump was quite photogenic. The first is taken looking towards Neyland at sunset one day….

A winter sunset over Neyland

A winter sunset over Neyland

The same few a little while later but if you look closely, you can see the separate streaks of condensing warm air as they create the cloud. On this occasion, all four chimneys at the new gas power station were puffing away…

So, it's pollution of sorts, but it is very pretty

So, it’s pollution of sorts, but it is very pretty

And last, but certainly not least is this purpley orange beast I spotted. It looks so alien in the blue sky with the thinner cloud around it, it’s easy to see how that, at a glance, people mistake these for UFOs. However, you’d have to be pretty silly to not realise this is a cloud.

Is it a bird, is it a plane, is it a UFO? No, it's a cloud!

Is it a bird, is it a plane, is it a UFO? No, it’s a cloud!

Anyway, there we have it. I hope you enjoyed the night shots that I took and that you might take the time to pop a comment on if you did. Maybe you hated them and want me to skip on to my holiday in Germany or something. Go ahead, it’s free, vent your spleen, I shan’t take offence.

Until next time, thanks for dropping by.

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