Stratospheric Ash Clouds
Taken by Laura Kranich on August 25, 2017 @ Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany
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Like earlier this week, today there was an unusual haze in the sky. Around the sun there was a bright white halo. I suggested it might be another load of canadian wildfire smoke and that turned out to be exactly the case. As the sun was getting close to the horizon I could see lots of fine gravity wave patterns in a white flat and thin cloud layer, which therefore very much looked like noctilucent clouds.

After the sun had set and the cirrus clouds moved into Earths shadow the colors above changed from white to an eerie yellow tone and the sky became astonishingly bright. My camera was shooting a timelapse sequence and I had to turn down the exposure several times by over a stop because the sky kept getting brighter even though it should have gotten darker. It was really intriguing.

The yellow colors moved down towards the horizon and more and more turned into orange while on the upper verge the clouds had a purple tone. The colors retreated quite rapidly towards the horizon and finally it finished with a narrow red glow above most of the western horizon with short upward rays at its upper edge for a few more minutes.

It was one of the most fascinating and vivid sunsets Ive ever seen.
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