I am washing my hands and praying like crazy I won't catch it from him.
Thankfully our next door neighbor took his snow blower to our driveway about five minutes before I suited up to tackle it this morning.
After yesterday's post about needle snowflakes, I had been checking outside to see the snowflakes and only about an hour ago did the flakes take on any interesting shapes.
Using the chart...this would be called a Stellar Plate.
The dotted lines around the flake is the frozen moisture residue from when I wiped down the magnifying camera lens before putting it outside to capture flakes.
What a difference my new 60mm lens makes in snowflake photography.
From the snowflake identification website:
These common snowflakes are thin, plate-like crystals with six broad arms that form a star-like shape. Their faces are often decorated with amazingly elaborate and symmetrical markings.
|Plate-like snowflakes form when the temperature is near -2 C (28 F) or near -15 C (5 F), as dictated by the snow crystal morphology diagram.|
Stellar plates often show distinctive ridges that point to the corners between adjacent prism facets. When these ridges are especially prominent, the crystals are called sectored plates.
|The simplest sectored plates are hexagonal crystals that are divided into six equal pieces, like the slices of a hexagonal pie. More complex specimens show prominent ridges on broad, flat branches.|
This one has the side branches on its branches so it is a simple stellar dendrite.
Dendritic means "tree-like", so stellar dendrites are plate-like snow crystals that have branches and sidebranches. These are fairly large crystals, typically 2-4 mm in diameter, that are easily seen with the naked eye.
|Stellar dendrites are clearly the most popular snow crystal type, seen in holiday decorations everywhere. You can see these crystals for yourself quite well with just a simple magnifier. (See Snowflake Watching for more about observing snowflakes.)|
This, of course, is a Snoopervising Faithful Orange Cat keeping me company as I work.
I had set the lens outside to gather snowflakes; when I went to go check on the flakes moments later I found him sitting with his fluffy belly directly over the lens.
He tries to help, he really does.
I can see a plate or two here too.
Having a heart beat while focusing makes the different between blur and clear.
My slow heart beat works in my favor; the beats are stronger as they pump out more blood and I get a stronger shake because of that fact.
Eventually I will tripod to elimate this issue.
Just not today.
Thinking this one is a Sectored Plate?
It amazes me that a shift in temperature by a degree or two will create completely different snowflake structures.
I am also glad that it works like that.
Makes having snowfall so much more interesting.
The weathervane across the street...will this storm eventually bury the letters?
It is getting close.
All for now...