Matt's World Of Weather: Can a Halo and A Moon Predict Snow?

Ring Around the Moon,
Rain (or snow) Soon

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As far as optical illusions go, this one is truly a favorite. To see the halo in the night sky you will need a couple of things first. Do you have something to write with? Good. We'll need 3 things to get us started.

1.) Some Cloud Cover- Keep in mind that we're not looking for the "lay on your back on a warm afternoon and see a bunny in the clouds"... kind of... clouds. Rather, we want the high wispy, cirrus clouds to help produce our halo. The cirrus clouds will indicate a pretty stable atmosphere and they will also provide the moisture needed to produce our prism before things start rocking-and-rolling in the coming days

2.) Cold Temperatures- As you rise higher and higher into the atmosphere there comes a point where raindrops lose their shape and become tiny ice crystals. Having temperatures as cold as -22°f, our crystals will begin to bend light to meet the exact specifications referenced in our Folklore.

And finally,

3.) The Moon- This ingredient is kind of a biggie. Without it all we have are a couple of cirrus clouds and a winter jacket. And let's be honest, it's tough to turn a cirrus cloud into a bunny rabbit. I said tough, not impossible.

So there you have it. This is a simple, but effective way of creating a halo around the moon and more importantly we now have an ingenious forecasting tool. Be sure to check out the video for additional information.

Does It Work
In my own experiences it holds up pretty well and can predict future precipitation. Seeing a halo around the moon is pretty rare, it helps provide insight into atmospheric conditions and most importantly, it's just beautiful. Naturally, it has gained a position close to the front in my Folklore Rolodex. Have you ever seen it?

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