Annoying fog

fog bow
fog bow

During the first part of this cruise we’ve been really lucky with the weather. Nice sunshine, few clouds and even quite warm temperatures, for Arctic standarts. However, these warm temperatures also have a downside. When warm air cools down over cold water, it cannot hold as much water vapour as it could. This results in the formation of a thin layer of fog. Only 30m thick, but very annoying if you want to do things… For the captain and his crew it makes sailing a lot more complicated (icebergs can only been seen at the last moment), but it also means we can’t see land, whales or bears. The latter means we can’t go ashore either. The only thing we can do is continue sailing and hoping for the fog to lift.

But sometimes fog brings something nice, like this fog bow. A fog bow is a small, colourless rainbow that is formed when the water drops are too small to diffract the light completely. The arch is still formed, the colours are missing. This phenomenon is quite rare and hard to capture as the contrast between the white bow and the rest of the fog isn’t great. It turned out that a polariser did help in bringing it out better.

Arjen Drost

Arjen is a Polar ecologist, nature photographer and full time expedition guide on expedition cruise ships in both Polar regions. With his pictures and stories he likes to show the beauty of these very fragile and threatened places.

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