Low rainbow near Joshua Tree

The height of a rainbow depends on the height of the sun. The higher the sun, the lower the rainbow.

View larger. | Photo by Patty Singer, taken just outside Joshua Tree National Park in southern California.

Patty Singer in California captured this beautiful image on February 22, 2018. She wrote:

This was taken on Route 62 just a bit outside of Joshua Tree as we were headed back to the LA area. It was snowing very fine, but also a fine rain mist was falling. We saw this low rainbow off to the side towards the mountain and immediaty stopped on a side road to capture this.

By the way, Patty said she was told later this rainbow is called a mist bow, also known as a fog bow. Is it? No. We asked sky optics expert Les Cowley of the great website Atmospheric Optics who said:

I see a rainbow from smallish raindrops. A mist or fog bow is broader and almost white.

See photos of fog bows here

Thanks for the wonderful photo, Patty, and thank you, Les!

Bottom line: A low rainbow near Joshua Tree, California.

Deborah Byrd