It’s never a good idea to stare directly into the sun, especially on a clear day. Some days, you can still see the sun, but it’s delicately veiled by a thin layer of cloud.
Elaine Shea spotted the sun behind some clouds and noticed a magnificent ring around it.
That ring is called a halo; it can also be seen at night around the moon.
The ring is a result of the sun’s light reflecting off hexagonally shaped ice crystals. When the ice crystals are almost all the same size and lying horizontally, a perfect ring appears.
This ring can help you forecast the weather! The cloud that produces these hexagonally shaped ice crystals is the cirrostratus cloud: an upper level cloud. It’s known as a system forerunner - leading the way for wet weather. Most time, you’ll get rain or snow 12 to 24 hours after spotting the halo.
Not sure what the weather will be? Sometimes it helps to look up!
- Weather university: Freezing rain is super cool-ed
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Cindy Day is the chief meteorologist for SaltWire Network.