50 Awesome Natural Phenomena That Will Blow Your Mind

Here is a list of 50 Natural Phenomena That Will Blow Your Mind

01. Blue Jets and Red Sprites

Red Sprite

Red sprites and blue jets are very high altitude upper atmospheric phenomena associated with thunderstorms. They have only recently been documented on camera.

Red Sprite

Red sprites are massive (as big as 20 km in size), but faint luminous flashes that appear directly above an active thunderstorm and coincide with powerful lightning strikes. Blue jets too are a high altitude optical phenomenon but are different from sprites.

Blue Jets

They were first documented in 1994.  Blue jets are optical ejections from the top of the core regions of electrically active thunderstorms but are not directly associated with ground lightning strikes.

Blue Jets
Blue Jet
Blue Jet

02. Earthquake Lights

Earthquake lights are an unusual luminous atmospheric phenomenon.  They are usually reported in areas of high seismic activity or volcanic eruptions. They were believed to be myths until they were photographed in 1965 during the Matsushiro earthquake of Japan.  It was then that seismologists worldwide accepted of their existence.  Earthquake lights are caused by an unknown mechanism.  They are either white, blue or multi-spectrum.

Earthquake Lights


03. Light Pillars

A light pillar is a visual phenomenon created when a light is reflected off by ice crystals giving out roughly horizontal parallel light beams. The light can come from the sun (just before sunrise or after sunset), moon or from terrestrial sources such as streetlights.  The pillars are not physically over the lights or anywhere else in space.  They are purely collected beams of light reflected from all the millions of crystals, which just reflect light towards the observer’s eyes.


04. Fire Rainbows

Fire Rainbows are a very uncommon phenomenon. They occur only in cirrus clouds which are wispy and thin.  Though its name suggests it to be a hot and flammy phenomenon, it takes place mostly in a colder climate.  This spectacular event is very short lived.  It is formed when sunlight hits ice crystals at a particular angle.


05. The Hessdalen Light

Hessdalen Light is an unexplained light phenomenon that occurs in the Hessdalen Valley of Norway.  They were observed over 15 to 20 times per week from 1982 until 1984.  Since then, the activity has decreased and now the lights are observed about 10 to 20 times per year.


06. Morning Glory Clouds

Morning Glory clouds are very rare types of clouds.  They can stretch 1,000 kilometers and occur at altitudes of up to 2 km. Although similar clouds are seen in many places worldwide, the ones over Burketown, Queensland in Australia occur predictably every spring.  These tubes and the surrounding air can cause dangerous turbulence for airplanes when clear.  They can achieve wind speeds of up to 60 kph.


07. Polar Stratospheric Clouds

Polar Stratospheric Clouds exist at very high altitudes within Earth’s stratosphere (around 70,000 ft).  Clouds normally do not form in the stratosphere because of its extreme dryness.  During winters, however, in high latitudes temperature falls low enough to permit formation of clouds in the stratosphere.  These clouds appear colorful when sunlight is refracted off ice crystals.  They are only noted during sunrise and sunset.


08. Kelvin Helmholtz Clouds

Kelvin Helmholtz Clouds are also known as billow clouds, shear-gravity clouds, KHI clouds, or Kelvin-Helmholtz billows. The swirls at the top of the cloud layers are normally evenly spaced. These are often good indicators of atmospheric instability and the presence of turbulence for aircraft.  The wave structure is formed when two different layers of air move at different speeds in the atmosphere.  The clouds often form on windy days where there is a difference in densities of the air.


09. Green Flash

Green flashes and green rays are optical phenomena that occur shortly after sunset or before sunrise.  A bright green spot is visible no more than a couple of seconds on top of the sun. They can be observed from any altitude (even from an aircraft).  They are usually seen at an unobstructed horizon like an ocean but are even possible over cloud tops and mountain tops.


10. Hole Punch Cloud

A fallstreak hole, hole punch cloud or skypunch is a large circular gap, that can appear in high altitude small clouds.  The holes are formed when the water temperature in the clouds is below freezing but the water has not frozen yet due to the failure of ice nucleation.  When ice crystals do form they will set off a chain reaction causing the water droplets around the ice crystals to evaporate leaving a large circular hole.

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