Monday, February 20, 2006

Unusual Sightings: Snowflakes and Four-leaf Clovers

It's been quite cold the last week or so with overnight temperatures dropping well below zero celcius, but it's starting to warm up with the forecast of rain coming. This morning on my way to a web cast presentation, a few snow flurries started to fall. They were quite large, heavy flakes much like cupcake sprinkles. When I got off the scooter I noticed that a few had landed on the seat and hadn't melted yet. I took a closer look at one of them and realized that it was in the shape of a six pointed star. I was so astounded because I had not seen anything like that before. It was so perfect I had to touch it with my finger and melt it away just to make sure what I was seeing was real. (Hmmm, there must be a metaphor somewhere in there....) I wish I had my camera with me. It reminds me of the time I found a four-leaf clover and left it on my night stand. My mom didn't know what it was and threw it away.

Anyway, I did a bit of research using the Guide to Snowflakes from SnowCrystals.com and I think what I saw was a fernlike stellar Dendrite densely decorated with rimed crystals. The actual flake that I saw was about 3mm in diameter, very flat, with 6 perfectly formed points and so dense it looked solid, much like the picture above.

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