Sunday, November 24, 2013
Low level stratus clouds and a more winter-like appearance prevailed just before 8:00 AM on Sunday, November 17, 2013 (top image) as seen from the parking lot at Noelridge Christian Church in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The image looks northwest. Light rain and temperatures nearing 60 degrees F were the existing weather conditions. Further east and hours later an unusual soup of unstable and spring-like ingredients created 88 tornado occurrences in the states of Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky, killing seven people and laying waste to the town of Washington, Illinois. The bottom image shows a map of tornado and funnel sightings on November 17.
Monday, November 18, 2013
With just a small window of opportunity to glimpse the Comet ISON in mid-November with its rising just before the Sun, I had hoped to catch it on the early morning of Friday, November 15, 2013. Alas, it was hidden by low stratus clouds as seen in this view looking southeast from the Bowman Meadows housing development in Marion, Iowa around 5:48 AM CST. The -0.32 magnitude planet Mercury can be seen in the cloud cover at left center, and above and right of Mercury is is the 0.96 magnitude star Spica. Hidden between them is ISON. This image is a 22 second exposure at f/7.1, 1000 ISO and 18mm focal length. Several seconds of exposure was probably necessary to make the comet visible.
Thursday, November 7, 2013
Both the moon and Venus were in their crescent phases as seen in the southwest sky from Noelridge Christian Church in Cedar Rapids, Iowa on Wednesday evening, November 6, 2013. The top image was taken around 5:14 PM CST, the middle at 5:23 PM, and the bottom at 5:33 PM. Venus, just 10 degrees in the sky from the moon on this evening, is actually at its brightest when it is in its crescent phase (it's closer to Earth then). This evening it shone at a sparkling -4.45 magnitude. Air temperature was around 35 degrees F.
Tuesday, November 5, 2013
This northeast view from my vehicle's driver side window shows the back end of a severe storm that was producing a wall cloud and funnel around 5:24 PM, Wednesday, June 12, 2013. In the foreground is 255th Street (County Highway D34), a quarter mile west of Highway 13, between the Iowa towns of Manchester and Ryan. The storm was moving left-to-right in this image. The dark cloud at right contained a funnel at this moment. This day had a high risk for severe weather placed on the area by the Storm Prediction Center (SPC).
Friday, November 1, 2013
Looking up through the branches of a sugar maple tree located in Bowman Woods Park in Cedar Rapids, Iowa around 3:20 PM, Friday, November 1, 2013. While most other tree's foliage have now lost their luster in this area, a small group of maples in the park still blaze forth.
Thursday, October 31, 2013
A brief lull in rain activity allowed this brilliant sunset view as seen from Noelridge Christian Church in Cedar Rapids, Iowa around 6:09 PM CDT, Wednesday, October 30, 2013. The lower level clouds (foreground) were racing from left-to-right in relation to the upper cloud base while surface winds were relatively calm. Air temperature was a mild 57 degrees F.