Our Anza observing site yields great views of
the night sky. However observant visitors to the site are often
treated to some interesting day time views as well.
A pair of bright sundogs at the Anza site on 1/24/98
On Friday January 24 a pair of fantastic sundogs
were visible in the west during much of the afternoon. Sundogs (also
known as mock suns or parhelion) are bright sunlike optical illusions
caused by sunlight passing through ice crystals in the upper atmosphere.
These sundogs were so bright they displayed multi-color rainbow
effects. There were each about ten degrees in height. I can't recall
ever seeing sundogs that large.
The circles to the inside of the sundogs in the
above image are reflections of the Sun in the camera's optics. There
was also a nice sun pillar that afternoon that continued till after
If you have spent any time at the Anza site you
know that from time to time we get views of some interesting aircraft
flying along the east-west corridor out of Ontario, Chino, El Toro,
and other airports. While on a short hike the day following the
sundogs I heard the roar of large number of prop-driven aircraft.
Looking overhead, and expecting to see a dozen or more planes I
saw a formation of four large 4-engine craft flying in formation
overhead (16 loud droning engines). It was a marvelous site and
a wonderful sound. They were high enough that I could not get a
positive ID, although they appeared to be B-29s. Since Chino Airport
is home base for a lot of vintage aircraft it is not unsual to see
WWII vintage aircraft over the site. I recall one day last summer
when a half dozen P-51 Mustangs roared over the site one after the
other traveling from NW to SE.
However I wonder if there are even four flying
B-29s around these days. In any case here are three of the several
photos I took. If you think you can identify these aircraft, please
drop a note
and let us know what they are, if not B-29s.
UPDATE: Our thanks to Gabriela Merello who identified
the aircraft below as C-130s. Here
is the information. -- Russell Sipe