AUTUMN 2007 part 2: Interludes between anticyclonic gloom!


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I note that from 2003 to 2006, the average number of Autumn weatherpix pages works out at 4.5 per year. For 2007 there are 2, and one's not even weather-related!

Here, then, are the sum total of seasonal/weather related images for Autumn 2007!

On occasional days the anticyclonic gloom that was such a feature this year cleared and it was a joy to be out in the warm sunshine. On a walk down Afon Clettwr near Tre'r-ddol, I espied this magnificent hawthorn and set my new ultrawide lens on it!

The next three mark the only really convective day of the whole Autumn, back in late September or early October. I headed out on an afternoon intercept, passing the Dysinni valley at just the right moment to catch a passing shower and the sun on Craig Yr Aderyn or Bird Rock - home to numerous cormorants who seem to remember the long gone days when the sea was much higher (or the valley had not silted-up). The crag offers some exciting climbs, particularly due to the rather unreliable rock!!

19mm shot of a series of small cumulonimbus clouds over Cardigan Bay. These are the only "Cbs" I have seen all Autumn - extraordinary!

This telephoto shot was taken as the convection developed and things really started to close in. So although there was only one "chase-day" in Autumn 2007, it produced a few good things!

Taking a camera on fishing-trips sometimes pays off, as in this instance! I had noticed this Sundog forming and abandoned my rods for the camera-bag!

Sundogs (scientific name - parhelia) are haloes, an atmospheric optical phenomenon associated with the refraction of sunlight by the small ice crystals that make up cirrus or cirrostratus clouds. This is an especially vivid one, here seen through a 19mm lens.... zoomed-in a bit....

....and here at full telephoto. This is the best I have ever seen!

Here's an ultrawide shot of the calm twilight that followed.

Great Autumn colours followed in early November, but photography was limited by further anticyclonic gloom!

One day it cleared again. Many leaves had fallen from the trees, but in the valley of the Afon Wen near Dolgellau I had a bit of an experiment with direct sunlight, beech trees and thin mist. The atmosphere was incredible....

...with crepuscular rays beaming through the foggy woods...


Following on from that I took the minor road out of Dolgellau, first stopping for a series of shots of the striking profile of Craig-las, a summit on the ridge that heads out west from Cadair Idris. The parallel nature of the wooded hillside and Craig-las behind it immediately caught my eye....


...and the sunless crag of Cyfrwy, with the Great Arete forming the pinnacled ridge. I climbed the Arete in about 1985 - it's not technically difficult but the rock needs care in places, and the exposure is mind-blowing - it's over 250m from bottom to top! The prominent flat-topped pinnacle is The Table - a popular venue for large organised picnics in Victorian times!


And that was Autumn 2007! The only other thing that happened was the snowfall that affected a lot of Eastern Wales on Sunday 18th. Hereabouts it was restricted to the higher ground - this is on top of the Machynlleth-Llanidloes road (~500m ASL) on the following Monday. Drifts to about 30cm demonstrate that this bit of the road is exposed to the slightest bit of wind from the east.

The snow occurred partly due to cold air over N Europe being pulled into the low pressure system that brought heavy rain to many areas, and also because evaporative cooling produced an isothermal layer in the atmosphere - meaning that, instead of the air becoming warmer closer to the surface (as is normally the case), it was cold all the way down - thereby lowering the snow-level.

Now let's hope for more of interest in the coming months and an improvement to the update frequency of the site!!



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