A nearly full Moon
and planet Earth's shadow
set together in this scene
captured Monday from snowy Mt. Jelm, home of the
Wyoming Infrared Observatory.
For early morning risers (and late to bed
shadow set in the western sky is a
apparition whose subtle beauty
is often overlooked in
favor of the more colorful eastern horizon.
Extending through the dense atmosphere,
Earth's setting shadow is seen
in this picture as a dark blue band along the distant horizon, bounded above
by a pinkish glow or antitwilight arch.
Also known as the Belt of Venus, the arch's
lovely color is due to
backscattering of reddened light from the rising Sun.
The setting Moon's light is
also reddened by the long sight-line
through the atmosphere and echoes the
dawn sky's yellow-orange hues.