November 23, 2010
The photo above shows what looks like a special effects scene from a science fiction production. I snapped it near Vezzolano, Italy, not far from Turin. As sunset was approaching, a beam of light beam suddenly appeared through a gap in the stratus cloud deck. This is simply a singular crepuscular ray, also called Ropes of Maui or just sunbeams. After sunset, a ray such as this would stretch across the western sky rather than appearing to zap the surface. Note the fainter shaft at right center. Photo taken on September 26, 2010.
Photo Details: Camera Maker: Canon; Camera Model: Canon EOS 30D; Focal Length: 85mm; Aperture: f/7.1; Exposure Time: 0.0080 s (1/125); ISO equiv: 100; Exposure Bias: none; Metering Mode: Matrix; Exposure: Landscape Mode; White Balance: Auto; Flash Fired: No; Color Space: sRGB.