Glowing iridescent clouds at night over Trinidad, Colorado

These glowing iridescent clouds were photographed by SkywatchTam over Trinidad, Colorado in the night of the December 12, 2016.

Yes, it’s actually the rays of the growing Supermoon that created these amazing colors! A pretty rare phenomenon!

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Iridescent clouds at night! Another rare sky phenomenon! Picture by SkywatchTam on December 13, 2016 @ Trinidad, Colorado, USA

He explains: ‘I went outside at around 530 MST on 12/13 to catch a glimpse of some meteors and was stunned by the sight of these clouds and the moonbow which caused rainbow colors on the clouds as well as the other Iridescent clouds. I watched this phenomenon until about 6am when the initial light from the sun started to come and the colors were gone. Thank you!!

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These haunting clouds look like nacreous clouds to me. Picture by SkywatchTam on December 13, 2016 @ Trinidad, Colorado, USA
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As the sun appeared, the colors faded away. Picture by SkywatchTam on December 13, 2016 @ Trinidad, Colorado, USA

Sky watchers sometimes report seeing rainbow colors within clouds. These colorful clouds are called iridescent clouds. When you see a cloud like this, you know there are especially tiny ice crystals or water droplets in the air. Larger ice crystals produce solar or lunar halos, but tiny ice crystals or water droplets cause light to be diffracted – spread out – creating this rainbow-like effect in the clouds.

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