Photo of snowy Sussex woodland trail Photo of snowy Sussex woodland trail

A Tale of Two Skies

These two photographs were taken this morning, within a few seconds of each other and from exactly the same spot. In the book I touch on the difference between viewing mist horizontally and vertically and these pictures illustrate the point nicely.

Mist and fog, which is just a word for intense mist, are low visibility caused by looking through millions of suspended water particles. When we look horizontally we have to look through hundreds of metres of these particles and the effect is very poor visibility. But since the mist often sits in a thin blanket that hugs the land, the story is very different when we look vertically upwards. (Or downwards if you are a pilot searching for somewhere to land.)

Looking upwards it is often possible to find clouds, as in the second picture, and if you have remained tuned to the direction the clouds are moving, you will be able to orientate yourself, as those around you stagger around in the mist and bump into trees!

This thin mist effect is likely to be repeated at times both tonight and tomorrow morning in large parts of the UK, especially in the south. Happy mist hunting!