Rambling travelogs from a world traveler

Monday, August 8, 2011

Yet another sunset

“A cloud does not know why it moves in just such a direction and at such a speed...It feels an impulsion...this is the place to go now. But the sky knows the reasons and the patterns behind all clouds, and you will know, too, when you lift yourself high enough to see beyond horizons.”  ~  Richard Bach

Gentle Readers and Loved Ones All,

I apologize up front for dumping two cliches on you at once.  Sunsets and Richard Bach quotations - how boring. Yes, I am about to show you yet another sunset.  I thought this one was special and deserving.

We took off yesterday from Guam in the western pacific and flew to Taipei, Taiwan.  A tropical depression was forming to the northwest of Guam and we had to work our way through it.  The clouds were layered and varied and it produced a really pretty progression of pictures.

This satellite photo may or may not orient you to the trip.  PGUM in the bottom right is Guam and RCTP on the northern part of Taiwan is Taipei.  The cloud mass to the northwest of Guam is the area these photos are from.  Please recall that you can click on the pictures to blow them up.

I knew the sun was going to be in our eyes for the cruise west.  But instead of being a nuisance, we climbed out of the lower cloud deck to see this. We are cruising at 40,000' above sea level an there is a fairly thick layer of stratus clouds above us. 

I zoomed in on the center of the sunlit area to produce this next picture. 

For some perspective, here is the sunset framed by the windscreen and instrument panel.

I like this next picture the best.  It shows the layered nature of the storm.  There is the status overhead and the cumulus clouds in the distance.  In the middle are the translucent cirrus clouds and through them you can see more cumulus below.  The cumulus are dark and unlit by the Sun as it has already set behind the clouds at that lower level.

As the Sun sank lower the clouds became more purple.

And finally, just before the sun set, this:

Because we were flying just slightly slower than the sun was moving down the sky, this whole process took about 45 minutes.

I hope you found these pictures as pretty as I did.

On that note, I remain,

Dad /Geoff