Thursday, October 6, 2011

Sunset - SWF

Some people didn’t care much for look of yesterday’s green water, so today I thought I should provide something with more visual appeal. I never tire of the sunset view from The Hill and have a large collection of sky photos from that vantage point. Events occasionally conspire to produce a most spectacular scene.

The best conditions for a colorful display occur when heavy clouds are positioned to create a narrow gap on the horizon through which the sun’s rays can shine upward to reflect from the bottoms of the clouds. Clouds swirling around the back side of a low pressure system produce the best effects. On Monday evening, the low pressure system that plagued us with rain showers most of last week finally moved far enough east to pull away the last of our cloud blanket. The timing was perfect for a fantastic evening display.

I was concerned that the clouds might begin to break apart before the display was completed, but conditions held steady right through last light.

Part of the appeal of colorful sunsets is the unpredictability of the developing colors and patterns. Conditions change so quickly that diverting your gaze for a minute could cause you to miss the best of the show. While I’m photographing, I’m also taking the time to just relax and enjoy what’s happening before me. Photos never capture the essential beauty of a blazing sunset spread across the sky, but they can act as catalysts to rekindle that image in your mind.

Then come the fiery red glows that I had hoped for. A sunset similar to this one occurred almost exactly one year ago. People from across Southern Ohio commented on the intense colors and unusual patterns produced by that event. I wonder how far reaching this sky became.

There are only a few available minutes to run through the various color patterns before the light begins to disappear. The plants and animals of Blue Jay Barrens are unaffected by a pretty sunset. People might argue that the sunset has no practical management value toward the wellbeing of this property. I would have to disagree. A key ingredient in any land management effort is the attitude of the manager toward the property being managed. I have to admit that despite the color of the sunsets, I’m already committed to managing Blue Jay Barrens in what I feel is the best way in which to perpetuate the rare ecosystems found here. But to stand in the middle of what I’ve devoted so much of my life to achieve and view such a spectacular scene, helps to renew my emotional energy and increase my enthusiasm for the work to come. Passion is wonderful, but sometimes it helps to be revitalized by some small event. Blue Jay Barrens sunsets do that for me, so I can say with all certainty that they have a profound and necessary impact on this property.

A Skywatch Friday submission.


  1. HI Steve..Now that is sure a switch throw'er from yesterday's post!! hahaha!!From the soup to the hot frying pan!!

    Fabulous sunset I like the third one with those light underlay of gray looking clouds, but they all are lovely, and for sure do make you think how wonderful a world we live in even if we have had a crappy day!! : }}}


  2. Nice shots!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

  3. I would be dancing for joy as I watched this sunset unfold!


    Sky above, earth below,
    Watch the stars begin to glow.

    Earth below, sky above—
    Watch the stars with me, my love!

    © 2011 by Magical Mystical Teacher

    Western Sunset

  4. Hi, Grace. Fortunately it seems like the occasional crappy days and the random beautiful sunsets tend to balance each other out. The sunsets stick with me longer, so I think I come out ahead.

    Thanks, Gary.

    Thanks, MMT.

  5. Very nice photos.

    Regards and best wishes