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Nature & Environment

Rare Yosemite 'firefall' stuns park visitors

By T.K. Randall
February 23, 2019 · Comment icon 7 comments

The phenomenon can be breathtaking. Image Credit: PD - Scfry
This spectacular natural phenomenon turns a waterfall of melting snow in to a fiery cascade of bright orange.
The Yosemite firefall typically occurs annually (depending on the water flow and cloud cover ) around mid-February when the snow starts to melt and the water cascades off the El Capitan rock formation.

When the sun shines on the waterfall at just the right angle, it illuminates the water but not the surrounding cliff-side, creating the illusion of a fiery torrent that looks a bit like molten lava.

The spectacle, which can last little more than ten minutes, attracts thousands of visitors to the park each year. Some have returned multiple times in the hope of capturing the perfect photograph.

A news feature with some additional shots of the phenomenon can be viewed below.



Source: Live Science | Comments (7)




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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Michelle 5 years ago
I'd love to see that in person. An aurora borealis too. And the blue lighting bugs in the Smokey Mountains. So many things to see, so little windows of time to see them.
Comment icon #2 Posted by the13bats 5 years ago
I was about 7 first yellow green lightning bug i saw scared me then i wanted to know why it didnt turn into tinkerbell, Natural light phenomenon is really cool stuff i love it.
Comment icon #3 Posted by Michelle 5 years ago
I don't remember ever not seeing lighting bugs. Growing up I would gently bring my hand up under them so they would land on it. They were scarce for a few years and are now making an abundant comeback. We try to maintain a natural habitat on our property to attract beneficial critters. 
Comment icon #4 Posted by susieice 5 years ago
That looks awesome. Would love to see it. I have seen the aurora borealis and was lucky enough to be in the woods without light interference. Nature's light shows are so beautiful. 
Comment icon #5 Posted by the13bats 5 years ago
I was in Orlando 46 years and near my hiuse might have seen 5 in that time but iut away from town i was told their were plentuful, I read a article when i was making fake fireflies that when tgeir habitate is destroyed they just die off, they dont relocate or adapt like some insects, now im in eustis and near us in the spring is a firefly nature walk at a national park i hope to go this year,  it said their are 1000s, Side note on my fake firefly, it was a uv led painted in glow paint, it lit up green and would fade out glowing, it was running off a solar garden light in series with an led fl... [More]
Comment icon #6 Posted by Nnicolette 5 years ago
I still see quite a bit around mississipi/arkansas. I wish we had them out here.
Comment icon #7 Posted by EnderOTD 5 years ago
Beautiful, the natural world never ceases to amaze.


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