As the sun sets on the horizon, the shadow of the Earth rises in the east. The subtle beauty of this daily phenomenon is usually forgotten in favor of the brightest and most colorful western horizon.
However, while observing the almost full moon on the rise on August 9, 2003, astronomer Steve Mandel admired the rise of the shadow while driving near Soquel, California, USA. His view looked east from the northern tip of Monterey Bay towards Fremont Peak, the highest point in the small mountains on the horizon.
The rising shadow of the Earth is projected through the dense atmosphere and is seen in this photograph as a dark blue band parallel to the horizon, delimited by a purple arc with pink hues and an orange glow. Also known as the Venus Belt, this precious color of the arc is due to the scattering of the flushed light of the setting Sun.
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