'Fire rainbows' are a rare phenomenon that only occur when the Sun is higher than 58° above the horizon and its light passes through cirrus clouds made of ice crystals. At the right alignment, the ice crystals act as a prism, and refract the light to look like a rainbow.

'Fire rainbows' are a rare phenomenon that only occur when the Sun is higher than 58° above the horizon and its light passes through cirrus clouds made of ice crystals. At the right alignment, the ice crystals act as a prism, and refract the light to look like a rainbow.

Photo: Rare 'fire rainbow' spotted in Florida sky

Photo: Rare 'fire rainbow' spotted in Florida sky

A "fire rainbow" appears in the sky on July 31 over South Florida. The rare phenomenon occurs when clouds containing uniformly sized water droplets diffract light and scatter wavelengths into a colorful ring-like pattern. Photo by Ken Rotberg, WPTV.

This is a rare meteorological phenomenon called a skypunch. When people see these, they think it’s the end of the world. Ice crystals form above the high-altitude cirro-cumulo-stratus clouds, then fall downward, punching a hole in the cloud cover. Freakishly weird!

This is a rare meteorological phenomenon called a skypunch. When people see these, they think it’s the end of the world. Ice crystals form above the high-altitude cirro-cumulo-stratus clouds, then fall downward, punching a hole in the cloud cover. Freakishly weird!

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