Illusions

A lake full of Pepto Bismal? Australia’s Lake Hillier – a bubble-gum pink wonder that scientists have yet to unravel

// April 12th, 2013 // No Comments » // Illusions

Australia

From above, Lake Hillier, located on the edge of Recherche Archipelago’s largest island in Australia, looks to be filled with Pepto Bismal. It’s bubble-gum pink waters are so unusual, airlines report passengers getting up from their seats and crowding around windows to get a peek of the stunningly beautiful natural wonder. Scientists are unsure why its waters retain their rose pink color but believe it may be from a dye created by the organisms living in the lake – Dunaliella salina and Halobacteria. Another theory proposes that the pink color might be attributed to the presence of red halophilic bacteria in the salt crusts. What they do know is that the bright pink waters are no illusion. The water retains its pink hue when taken away in containers.

Hessdalen Lights in Norway have been reported since the 1800′s

// January 10th, 2013 // No Comments » // Illusions

Hessdalen Lights in Norway

The Hessdalen Lights are an earth anomaly (or UFO phenomena, they’re tough to classify without knowing exactly what they are) commonly seen in the Hessdalen valley in the central part of Norway. The mysterious lights, typically large, bright white, blue, red, or yellow lights floating above the ground or shooting at amazing speeds through the air, have been witnessed since 1811 or earlier. Interest in the lights picked up in 1981 when residents in the area began to see unknown lights in the valley and in the nearby districts. The lights sometimes remain still and sometimes flash, and can suddenly move at extreme speeds up into the atmosphere or down into the ground, or into one of the many lakes in the area.

Black colored icebergs (they come in blue, green, and brown too)

// January 6th, 2013 // No Comments » // Illusions

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Icebergs are typically white but various factors can occasionally cause them to turn a different color – green, brown, black, or blue are possible. Factors that distort the iceberg color include a lower density of air within the ice (which allows less sunlight to reflect off the surface or pass through the iceberg with a scattered pattern of light) or a higher density of rock embedded within the ice. Seldom are colored icebergs the result of man-made pollution or contaminants. Many times a colored iceberg has rolled over, revealing the discolored basal ice that once lay underneath the surface. Even striped icebergs are possible and can be created when a crevice fills quickly with water that freezes before ice bubbles are formed inside. Although rarely seen in nature, here are some pictures of famously colored icebergs.

Marfa Lights

// December 27th, 2012 // No Comments » // Illusions

Marfa Lights  - photo courtesy Robert Thomson

In 1883, the first official report of the Marfa Lights came out. A Texas homesteader, Robert Ellison, noticed the lights and feared that Indians were attacking his home. After viewing the lights for some time however, it became clear to Mr. Ellison that these mysterious lights were not attacking Indians. These lights danced and flew wildly across the open plains.

Ghost Lights

// December 27th, 2012 // No Comments » // Illusions

Ghost lights along an old stagecoach route

In 1656, John Davis of Cardinshire, Wales recorded some of the earliest historical evidence of ghost lights. In this small town in Northern Wales, ghost light sightings were quite common and believed to portend the death of someone in their town.

Green Sun (or Green Flash)

// December 27th, 2012 // No Comments » // Illusions

Green Sun flash of light during sunset

Every once in a while, if the atmospheric conditions are just right, the sun will spark a bright green hue just as it disappears on the horizon. Called the ‘green flash’, this phenomena is purported to be caused by the spectral separation of the sun’s colors.

Ball Lightning

// December 27th, 2012 // No Comments » // Illusions

On July 5, 1852, a Periason man reported an extraordinary event. While sitting in his living room chair, a bright ball of light descended down his chimney and emerged from the fireplace.