Tag Archives: clouds

The calm before the storm

Late on Sunday afternoon we headed to the other side of the Pauatahanui Inlet for some much needed rest from garden work and studying.

The day had been glorious and the light perfect for taking photographs
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but as we neared our parking spot the predicted change in the weather began to really show itself.
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We have noted a dramatic increase in birdlife both on and above the Inlet in the past few weeks. However they are shy and like to scurry or fly away at our advances and without posh camera equipment it is difficult to capture much more than blobs.

The clouds told of the approaching front as it came in from the north
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and edged a little in from the eastern flanks as well.
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We got back to the car just as the first large raindrops plopped to the ground but not before we had spotted two Kingfishers and had heard the Canadian geese calling off in the distance.

Bushfire sky on Saturday

The ash and smoke from the devastating Australian bushfires drifts to New Zealand’s atmosphere on the prevailing north westerly winds. We have had plenty of those this summer.

Any sunshine this morning, long after dawn, is a strange orangey red. The day is very cloudy and cool but the sky looks like this when the sun can shine through.
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Twilight sky and the new moon

The twilight sky tonight was both dramatic, and in different directions, very understated. Here are some photos I snapped this evening.

I even captured a blurry new moon.

I need a tripod to stop night time photo blur but you can see the thin fingernail of a new moon as the daylight begins to sneak in here again, second by increasing second, each day.

Sky lines and the softness of the sky

Today was a “D” day for me. I have been waiting for some considerable time to get a decision that had rather important implications in several areas of my life.

In typically human fashion my mind had turned over endless options, outcomes and scenarios despite my efforts to quell unnecessary mulling and musing.

The result of the appointment was totally unexpected but a real bonus in many ways right now. The key issue still needs a lot of attention and focus but that seems a lot easier than the decision I was expecting.

I returned home feeling a real mix of emotions and decided that the rest of the day was mine as a sort of “down day” away from chores and demands or decisions.

I had some photos to upload to my computer and here is one in particular that I just love.

This sunset earlier in the week was brilliant in its colours in the western sky.

But it was the first photo above which was taken looking more to the south that stood out for me in its soft, soft tones. The sort of softness I needed today.

A pastel sky at sunset

The sky painters went to their pastel palette last evening to paint a sunset in tones of baby blue and pink for us to gaze at.

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In the fact the whole sky was encircled with colour. There was a soft, golden yellow off to the west but in other directions it was soft blues and pink tinged clouds.2012_0424Image0098

I noticed that within a minute or two of capturing these photos all the colours were completely gone.

A Leunig cartoon

I really like the cartoons drawn by Michael Leunig. Here is an offering that is so relevant to life these days. The weather here was not that good for lying on the grass and gazing at the sky but I did watch the incoming cold front at lunch time and the variegated coloured clouds at dusk tonight. Charge up those batteries out in nature.

Earthshine, moonlight, stars and planets

We have been enjoying some warm, clear Indian summer days this week and with it has come clear nights. This past summer has been one of cloud, cloud and more cloud so viewing the night sky has not been an option.

The nights are drawing in here and daylight saving finishes this weekend so pulling the curtains is happening earlier. As I have been shutting the curtains I look into the western sky and I have spotted the crescent moon and with it two very bright objects.
I’ve checked and they are the planets Venus and Jupiter. The latter is fading fast and last night was not as shiny as it had been earlier in the week.

Jupiter from Voyager 1

When we came home from singing on Tuesday night I was able to gaze up at the sky at 9pm and see the familiar Southern Cross and all the other stars of our Milky Way. It is a comforting sight.

A fellow blogger Jo posted a very interesting piece earlier this week about Earthshine and that piqued my curiosity. The new moon has had this phenomenon occurring in our sky too this week and I have learnt a new word. Sunshine, moonlight, starlight are all old familiar terms but “Earthshine” has an enchanting ring to it.

Here is what Jo wrote about Earthshine and I would encourage you all to pop on over to her online magazine The Hazel Tree and read the interesting posts she writes as well we viewing the stunning photos she and her family take on their patch of earth.

“Earthshine is the faintly illuminated ‘dark’ part of the Moon, which is not lit directly by sunlight. Instead, it’s lit by reflected sunlight from the Earth.
The best time to observe Earthshine is when the Moon is a thin crescent, either while it’s new in the evening, or an old waning Moon at sunrise. For some reason that isn’t yet properly understood, it is much more noticeable during the months of April and May.
The phenomenon was first explained by Leonardo da Vinci in the first decade of the 16th century. Cloud cover on the Earth reflects more sunlight than land or sea, although snow and ice reflect up to 90% of sunlight back into space.
Earthshine is also known as ‘the Moon’s ashen glow’ or ‘the old Moon in the new Moon’s arms’.”

That old tease, the sun

We seem to have been shrouded in clouds here for so many days this month. A month in which we should be experiencing sunny, summer weather.

Currently the sun often shows itself with great beauty as it sets. The sky last night was very dramatic.

And today, later in the afternoon, there was clear blue sky a way off to sea towards the northwest. But no sun has shone down on us at all despite the tempting teases.

Perhaps tomorrow…….