Thursday, July 24, 2008

Morning Mists...

Those of us privileged to live in Lawson Valley (just east of the town of Jamul) frequently see beautiful mists from a perspective most people don't see very often: from above. We live at a high enough altitude (above 2000 feet) that the coastal “marine layer” tops are well below us. As I drive into work each morning when there is a marine layer, I see it – sometimes right near our home, sometimes not visible until I've driven a few miles toward Jamul.

Once I spot it, I'm in for a real visual treat: cottony white layers of fog, moving at a very slow pace. Often there are very visible “waterfall” formations, apparently formed in slow motion, but looking still or frozen to my eye. Almost always there are mountain tops (as visible near the center horizon in the photo above) that poke out of the “sea” of fog like mountainous islands rising out of some ethereal sea. Eventually I will drive right into this fog, plunging instantly from bright sunshine into gloom and low visibility. Today that transition happened about halfway down the hill on the approach into the town of Jamul down the Skyline Truck Trail.

I love this phenomenon!