Social Question

Sunny2's avatar

Have you seen the green flash?

Asked by Sunny2 (18832points) May 19th, 2011

I’d heard about the green flash that occurs at the moment the sun goes below the horizon. Then my husband and I saw it at the same time. It only lasts for the blink of an eye, but it definitely happens.
Have you seen it?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

20 Answers

wundayatta's avatar

I’ve looked, but have never seen it.

erichw1504's avatar

I’ve never even heard of this before. Is there a scientific explanation behind this? Any sources?

Sunny2's avatar

@erichw1504 I have my own theory. It only happens when the sun sets over a body of water with no clouds and the water is on the horizon. I think the moment the sun sinks below the water, its light refracts through the water for just a second, producing the green light.

El_Cadejo's avatar

Ive never even heard of this before either. @erichw1504 here is some explanation

I need to start looking for this now.

Cruiser's avatar

Here is a slideshow of these green flashes. Press the play button.

erichw1504's avatar

Yeah, and it was pretty bad.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Many times watching the Sun go down at the Beach House restaurant in Kauai.

zenvelo's avatar

@Tropical_Willie I had dinner at the Beach House on Kauai last Friday! But too cloudy for a good sunset.

I have seen the green flash a few times from Wailea on Maui where there is an unobstructed view of the sun setting at the ocean horizon.

gailcalled's avatar

Sadly no, but not for lack of trying.

janbb's avatar

Sort of but it wasn’t really impressive. I felt like, “So that’s what I’ve been looking for all these years.”

YARNLADY's avatar

There are several pictures of it on Google Images but I’ve never actually seen it.

There is a Green Flash Restaurant right next to the motel I always stay in when I am in San Diego.

picante's avatar

I had not heard of this before—and I’m a sky watcher. Thanks for bringing the phenomenon to my attention, but Janbb’s review makes me think I’ll not go out of my way to see it.

Sunny2's avatar

@picante It isn’t that it’s such a huge deal, it’s catching it that’s the kick. It literally lasts as long as a blink of your eye. If you blink, you miss it. You only have to go out of your way to see it if you’re where there’s an unencumbered view of the horizon where water meets sky. And then, you just have to be there at sunset and not blink as the sun disappears from view.

picante's avatar

Thank you, Sunny2. I’m actually in Orlando next week, so I might try to catch it between blinks!

janbb's avatar

@picante I think you have to be on the west coast of something, not in the middle.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

@janbb You get the CEE-gar! The Tampa / St Pete area beaches would be ideal.

janbb's avatar

@Tropical_Willie It was indeed Clearwater Beach where I finally saw it after looking in Key West for years.

picante's avatar

Color me mortified. I had no idea that Orlando wasn’t near the ocean. I’ve had various business trips to Florida, this being one of them, and I’ve been in several Florida cities, all of which have been ocean-facing. I just go where they tell me, and I should probably spend a bit more time researching the destination. Not only have I not seen the green flash, I’ve not seen Orlando. I’ll crawl back in my cave now.

janbb's avatar

@picante You are forgiven, you crazy old Texan you! However, if you have some free time in Orlando, check out Winter Park – it is a particularly charming town for Florida. and there is a very quaint boat ride on the lake but alas, no flash.

picante's avatar

Thanks, @janbb. I appreciate your absolution and the recommendation!

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