Afternoon illumination

The geographical alignment of our valley seems to give rise to very special evening light under certain circumstances, especially in Spring and Autumn. Usually after a spell of rain when the sky clears locally with passed dark clouds to the East and some cloud remains out to the West we get a show of what we call ‘green light’. As the sun gets close to setting it seems to sneak a strong burst of light horizontally under the distant cloud to bathe us in a flood of ‘golden hour’ light. All the trees and bracken clad hillsides turn a striking, rich orangey colour so intense that photos of the phenomenon look to have been overly photo-shopped and unreal. Those lucky enough to experience this occasional light show find it uplifting and exciting – I think we all tend to respond favourably to ‘warm’ light. I was prompted to write this little item because a couple of days ago this occurred and it coincided with the flowering of the wild Cherry trees at the top of the CL – those on the site were able to enjoy this brief bit of local drama.

I recently found this quote from Gilpin that shows the New Forest seems to specialise in this seasonal delight:

“But the effect of light is best seen in an evening storm, when it rises from the east, behind the woody bank; while the sun sinking in the west, throws a splendour upon the trees, which seen to such advantage against the darkness of the hemisphere, shows the full effect of light and shade.”
(William Gilpin, 1791