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Celestial Events: Summer Solstice, Lenticular Clouds, and Super Moon

Life has been interesting here in Sand Canyon. My friend Georgette and I, with special permission, hiked up to a local cave to find out where the sun hit it during the summer solstice. Got up before dawn to make sure we were at the cave when the sun rose above the ridge, and hoofed it up there watching the dawn break as the coyotes howled.

From my house, I see the morning sun casting its golden glow on the distant cliffs every day. It was incredible to actually be standing on those cliffs at sunrise, warmed by the light that cut through a chill morning breeze. I felt so lucky!

Last time Georgette and I went up to the state park, we saw bear tracks on the path leading to the spring. This time, we saw fresh bear prints inside the cave. The he or she bear may have been close by watching us. Andy Greene, the late Kawaiisu elder, liked to tell of the time his mother was chased out of that cave by a bear, and I was a little bit worried that the same thing would happen to us!

Close on the heels of the solstice, my husband and I awaited the super moon. That evening the clouds were spectacular. We are fortunate to live in a place that spawns lenticular clouds. Sand Canyon is located on the downwind side of the mountains, where clouds of this type tend to form, and lately they have been plentiful. According to Wikipedia, glider pilots love the conditions that cause these clouds because they provide great lift. And we do have a popular glider port in town.

Lots of wonderful celestial happenings. Enjoy the photos! All were taken with my iPhone.

P.S. You can visit this cave too by booking a spring or fall tour to Tomo-Kahni State Historic Park.

Summer Solstice dog shadow by raven rock

Summer Solstice dog shadow by raven rock

Bear tracks over footprints

Bear tracks over footprints

Lenticular cloud at sunset

Lenticular cloud at sunset

Mushroom-shaped lenticular cloud

Mushroom-shaped lenticular cloud

View east. Awaiting the super moon.

View east. Awaiting the super moon.

About C. A. Waldman

I am a writer living in the Southern Sierra region of California, U.S.A.

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