Snowy Telluride Part II, Mesa Verde & Rime Ice

January 09, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

I have returned from Telluride.  Earlier this week, I attempted to take pictures of the full moon setting.  There was some high, thin cloud cover...just enough to make the moon fuzzy most of the time.  However, as it was getting close to Little Cone Mountain, there was enough of a gap in the clouds to get a clearer shot of the moon.  

With a temperature of 17 degrees (at least it was +17 degrees that morning!), it was time to focus on the approaching dawn and its array of colors in these high, thin cirrus clouds.   In my opinion, these cirrus clouds are best for comes to sunrise and sunset colors, often spectacular just before sunrise or just after sunset.   Here, you can see an array of pink, blue and purple as light begins to hit the bottom of these clouds.  That is Wilson Peak, southwest of Telluride.  

Here is a close up of the pink sky behind Wilson Peak.  

While on my way back from Telluride, I also spent a half a day at Mesa Verde National Park.  There are advantages and disadvantages to visiting Mesa Verde in January.  Some of the ruins and hiking trails are closed in winter.   However, the crowds are light this time of the year.  There were times were you felt like you had the park to yourself.  Here is a picture of the Far View Ruins with some snow on top.

Walls at Mesa VerdeWalls at Mesa VerdeMesa Verde National Park

Leaving the park around sunset had a great view of the last light hitting the cliffs known as The Knife Edge.  

After spending the night in Central New Mexico, freezing fog overnight created this beautiful scene on Interstate 40 near Clines Corner, New Mexico.  Rime ice is formed by water droplets in the fog that freezes to surfaces of objects. When you have this low hanging fog while temperatures are in the teens or 20s, this phenomena can be seen on the windward (wind-facing) side of tree branches. 


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