Sunday, May 31, 2009

Wacky weather

We've had some crazy weather here the last few days. First, we had rain, rain and more rain. In fact, we had so much rain that some seagulls got confused and decided to take up residence in my backyard for a couple of days!

Then, this evening I was having dinner at a friend's house when we had to get all the kids indoors because the wind really picked up and branches were falling from trees. The kids all rushed to the basement screaming, "tornado, tornado!" They're a little dramatic!

When I got home, my husband called for me to come outside to see a beautiful double rainbow. The photos do not do it justice. I think we have some more unsettled weather in the forecast this week!

I was curious about what causes a double rainbow and here is an explanation I found at

What makes a double rainbow?Sometimes we see two rainbows at once, what causes this? We have followed the path of a ray of sunlight as it enters and is reflected inside the raindrop. But not all of the energy of the ray escapes the raindrop after it is reflected once. A part of the ray is reflected again and travels along inside the drop to emerge from the drop. The rainbow we normally see is called the primary rainbow and is produced by one internal reflection; the secondary rainbow arises from two internal reflections and the rays exit the drop at an angle of 50 degrees° rather than the 42°degrees for the red primary bow. Blue light emerges at an even larger angle of 53 degrees°. his effect produces a secondary rainbow that has its colors reversed compared to the primary, as illustrated in the drawing, adapted from the Science Universe Series Sight, Light, and Color.
It is possible for light to be reflected more than twice within a raindrop, and one can calculate where the higher order rainbows might be seen; but these are never seen in normal circumstances.


  1. Hey we saw the rainbow after you left! I didn't take any pictures, so thanks for doing it for me! How come neither of us thought to take any pictures of our fun evening?

    Let's do dinner again soon! I had such a good time.

  2. Wow, that's amazing, Jane! Great shots of the double rainbow. :) Stay safe in the crazy weather. We've had a more than normal amount of rainfall this spring too.

  3. Wow!!! And you said the photos don't do it bright. LOVING it!

    Lisa :)

  4. The rainbow photos are gorgeous!!
    Wow....I've never seen such a pretty one and this one's a double :0)

    We've been getting our fair share of thunderstorms and rain here too... Here's hoping for some sunshine.

  5. That is an incredibly beautiful rainbow! Thanks for sharing the photos.