Sundog Over Montara Mountain

On Sunday, my family and I went for a walk on Montara Mountain. On the way down my Mom spotted what looked like a miniature, rainbow-colored sun! My Dad identified it as a Sun Dog. As I looked closer at it I saw that there was a white, cloudy ball at the center. As we moved on I tried to keep track of both the Sun Dog and the Sun as we moved into a patch of trees. When we came out of the woods the Sun Dog had faded and all that was left were several bright wisps of cloud.

After we returned home I looked on the Internet and learned that Sun dogs are formed by the Sun being reflected off ice crystals, water, fog or mist in the air. They most commonly occur at sunset or sunrise. A good web page to learn more is at Wonderquest.

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Photograph by Elizabeth Boville

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