Moonbow Observed Over La Palma, Spain

May 04, 2018

Moonbow_Arcoiris lunar pano red

May 2018 Viewer's ChoicePhotographer: Enrique Navarro Izquierdo 
Summary Authors: Enrique Navarro Izquierdo; Jim Foster

This photo shows a moonbow as observed from the Canary Islands (Island of La Palma), Spain, on the night of March 2, 2018. A fragment of a secondary bow can be seen at bottom right. Of course, to view bows this bright and colorful at night, a long exposure is required -- in this case 25 seconds. Nonetheless, such bows aren't often photographed since the photographer must anticipate that the atmospheric conditions are optimal for a moonbow to occur -- nearly a full Moon positioned low in the sky and rain showers overhead of the observer or between the observer and the horizon opposite from the Moon. Note that moonbows can be seen with the unaided eye (usually a full Moon is needed), but because the Moon is so dim compared to the Sun, they appear rather wan. The tree in the foreground is a dragon tree (Dracaena draco) that's a least 200 years old.

Photo Details: Camera: Canon EOS 7D; Software: Adobe Photoshop CS6 (Windows); Exposure Time: 25.000s; Aperture: ƒ/2.8; ISO equivalent: 1600; Focal Length: 11.0mm.