From a photograph by Solomon D. Butcher of four daughters of rancher Joseph M. Chrisman, at their sod house in Custer County, Nebraska. From left to right, Harriet, Elizabeth, Lucie, and Ruth. Photographed in 1886.

Friday, December 21, 2007

December Sunset

Mackeral skyMackeral skies and mares tails
Make lofty ships carry low sails.

The mackeral sky is composed of cirrus and cirrocumulus clouds (which resemble scale patterns on a mackeral's back). The mares tails refer to trails of ice crystals blown in streaks from cirrus clouds. These clouds may appear ahead of an approaching storm or frontal system, and can indicate strong winds aloft. If the cirrus and/or cirrocumulus thicken to cirrostratus, altostratus, and then nimbostratus, stormy conditions may be on the way. Strong winds require less sail for navigation in a rough sea. (Source: Weather Lore, Jingles and Proverbs


I think this cloud pattern (most visible at upper left of photo) might be a "mackeral sky." If so, the proverb held true. This was Tuesday's sunset sky. On Wednesday, we had a rainy, windy day in Hopkinsville. We're not complaining about the rain, though, or the other rains that we've received this month. We hope that the water table is returning to normal levels.

6 comments:

John Ruberry said...

Nice photo

kennethF said...

Hey G:
Technical info... this photo exp balance is numerical. White vs. black dots are equal_ but this washes away colors that boost the visual-Q. I myself would favor that grey overcast on the top third to show mid-band colors? More than you wanted to know? Well I think that YOU are doing more&more of your blog photo work? later, ken

Genevieve said...

Hi, Kenneth. Yes, you are getting a bit too technical there for my simple little mind. :)

I did reduce the gamma on the bottom 1/3 of the photo to darken it a little. I wanted the unusual sky colors and the trees to be the "star" of the photo, not the tops of some mundane urban buildings.

Genevieve said...

Hi, John. Thanks. :) Merry Christmas to you and your family. I hope you've escaped the snow and ice this time around.

Collagemama said...

I haven't heard the expression "mackeral sky" in a coon's age, and never did know what it meant. Reading your blog immediately called up from some ancient depth:

Mackeral sky,
mackeral sky.
Never long wet,
never long dry.

Pretty photo, and I do hope you get rain. We have a grass fire warning in North Texas, so hope the holiday celebrations won't include fireworks.

Merry Christmas!

Genevieve said...

Thanks for the little rhyme, Collagemama. We've had quite a lot of rain. I'm not sure if we're back to the normal amount for the year, but the ground is fairly saturated at present.

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CONTENTMENT: Keep your heart free from hate, your mind from worry, live simply, expect little, give much, sing often, pray always, forget self, think of others and their feelings, fill your heart with love, scatter sunshine. These are the tried links in the golden chain of contentment.
(Author unknown)

IT IS STILL BEST to be honest and truthful; to make the most of what we have; to be happy with simple pleasure; and to be cheerful and have courage when things go wrong.
(Laura Ingalls Wilder, 1867-1957)

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