The hairy side of winter

It is a cold morning with light wind, perhaps a little fog, and temperatures definitely chilly. Below freezing chilly. You look out the window and it appears like the landscape is covered with a frosting. A dusting of white no matter where you look.

This is frost. Actually more like frost on steroids. The technical name is hoar frost. The word hoar is derived from the Old English word for "hair". And upon closer inspection, a morning with hoar frost looks like everything is growing white hair.

How does this happen? The ingredients are simple: supercooled water droplets and a freezing surface. "Supercooled" means water exists in the liquid state even when the temperature is below freezing (32°). When the wind is light and the air is saturat



And while hoar frost looks pretty, remember that it can make all surfaces icy and slippery. Walk carefully on roads and sidewalks. But use the camera because the scenery is spectacular.