Category: phenomena

Celebrating World Photography Day with Wikimedia Commons Pictures of the Year

August 14th, 2012 Permalink

August 19, 2012, is World Photography Day. This is great opportunity to say thank you to photographers. Without photographers licensing their awesome captures as Creative Commons, we wouldn’t be able to share so many awesome works of art. Once upon a time there were not nearly so many quality images licensed under Creative Commons, but that continues to change. We wanted to celebrate World Photography Day by showcasing the Wikimedia Commons Pictures of the Year, decided at the last part of June 2012. There were all sorts of categories in this Sixth Annual Wikimedia Commons POTY Contest, so here are extremely varied subjects that were declared Picture of the Year winners. Congratulations! [31 Photos]

WORLD PHOTOGRAPHY DAY, Wikimedia Commons Picture of the Year 1st place: View of Lake Bondhus in Norway, and in the background of the Bondhus Glacier, part of the Folgefonna Glacier

Wikimedia Commons Picture of the Year 2011 #1 with 143 votes in Final. A view of the lake Bondhus in Norway. In the background a view of the Bondhus Glacier as a part of the Folgefonna GlacierView of Lake Bondhus in Norway, and in the background of the Bondhus Glacier, part of the Folgefonna Glacier. Photo #1 by Alchemist-hp (www.pse-mendelejew.de)

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Paradise In The Devil’s Garden: Plitvice Waterfalls

July 13th, 2012 Permalink

Once upon a time in Croatia, this mysterious world was hidden deep in an enchanted forest and called “The Devil’s Garden.” For the few brave souls that dared to venture beyond the woods, they found a paradise of amazingly-colored lakes, spectacular karst and thunderous waterfalls. Together it creates the natural phenomena which can still be seen at Plitvice Lakes National Park. Every year, at least 1,200,000 visitors come to be awed by the geomorphology and natural beauty of changing lake colors. There are 16 cascading lakes in crystal-clear shades of blue and green. Plitvice waterfalls have been called some of the most beautiful to be found among UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Plitvicka Jezera National Park is spread out over 73,350 acres and some of the most amazing features are underground in the form of subterranean caverns. [37 Photos, 4 Videos]

Walking through Plitvice NP

Plitvice National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site where 16 gorgeous lakes from azure to green to gray are said to constantly be changing colors based on the quantity of minerals or organisms in the water and depending upon the angle of sunlight. It’s an amazing natural phenomena and just one of the many reasons people come to Plitvice. Photo #1 by Desktop Nexus

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Creepy Abandoned Haunted Hospital: Soon to House Senior Citizens [70 PICS, 5 Vids]

May 19th, 2012 Permalink

How do you tell grandma or grandpa that you love them? Certainly not by putting them in a formerly abandoned and haunted hospital! Facepalm, you’ve got to be kidding me? That is just so wrong in so many different ways! The six-story Linda Vista Community Hospital, which has been abandoned since 1991, is an infamous Hollywood favorite for filming super scary movies. It also has a notorious reputation for all kinds of paranormal phenomena. After some serious renovations, the supposedly haunted hospital will be revamped into about 100 single-bedroom ‘affordable housing’ apartments — Linda Vista Senior Apartments. Do you still dispute it’s haunted after viewing the 70 photos and 5 paranormal investigation videos as ‘proof’? Even skeptics, would you want your grandma to live anywhere within the top 5 floors of these future senior living apartments? About 42% of the U.S. population admits to believing in ghosts and the decaying and creepy hospital is a hotspot for urban explorers, paranormal investigators and the curious in Los Angeles. And then there’s all those animal sacrifices and allegedly satanic rituals which leave some people asking does the devil live inside Linda Vista Hospital?

While HDR sparked epic complaints on the illegal Six Flags tour, it is an art that we especially appreciate when it comes to enhancing extremely eerie, abandoned places . . . especially ‘haunted hospitals.’ If you’d rather see an abandoned place without HDR, here is Nara Dreamland, a derelict knock-off Disneyland in Japan. Otherwise, photographers, paranormal investigators and urban explorers take us on an urbex tour of this creepy ‘haunted’ hospital. Welcome to Linda Vista, future housing for grandpa and grandma. [70 photos and 5 paranormal investigation videos]

Ray of light in the former maternity ward, abandoned Linda Vista Community Hospital

Dear “low income” senior citizen of Los Angeles, to reward you for all your struggles in life, Hollywood’s most beloved haunted hospital filming location is being refurbished so you can live there. The creepy idea is the facepalm of the day! The 88 year old hospital has been abandoned for 21 years. It’s supposedly and “scientifically” proven to be haunted. Here you see a ray of light in the former maternity ward of abandoned and eerie Linda Vista Community Hospital. Photo #1 by Neil Kremer

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37 Out-of-this-World Photos: Earth from Above

March 22nd, 2012 Permalink

Aerial photography can give us awesome perspectives, but when we zoom out and then observe the Big Blue Marble from high above, such as the breathtaking views of Earth from the ISS, it’s an eye-opening experience for most of us. Internationally, many countries have satellites and spacecrafts with their unblinking eyes focused on the Earth. These amazing photos offer us a unique window overlooking our world; viewing the Earth from above offers a stunning opportunity to see our wonderful planet in out-of-our-world ways that most humans will never experience in their lifetime. [37 Photos]

Aurora Australis and Daybreak

Aurora Australis and Daybreak. The Aurora Australis, seen at right on Earth’s horizon, and daybreak (left) highlight this ‘busy’ photograph taken by one of the Expedition 30 crew members aboard the International Space Station. Photo #1 by NASA

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Rare Rainbows in the Dark [24 PICS]

August 1st, 2011 Permalink

Rare rainbows in the dark of night, midnight moonbows, are an amazing natural phenomena. A rainbow in the moonlight is several hundred thousand times less bright than a rainbow during the day. A true lunar rainbow is lit by the moon itself. To the naked eye, they can appear white and are also called “white rainbows.” There are a few places in the world where “spray moonbows” are so-called “frequent phenomena” such as near waterfalls in Yosemite National Park, Cumberland Falls in Kentucky, and Victoria Falls in Australia. Here is a collection of these wonderful lunar rainbows and well as a few other natural phenomena that appear a bit like rainbows in the dark. [24 Photos]

Upper Yosemite Falls Moonbow

Upper Yosemite Falls Moonbow. Rainbows in the dark have been delighting the few who are fortunate enough to witness the phenomenon since Aristotle’s time. Photo #1 by Teddy Llovet

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Erupting Volcanic Paradise: Lava Rivers & Spatter Fountains of Hawaii [48 PICS]

July 30th, 2011 Permalink

Volcanic activity is spiking in Hawaii and people are flocking there to see the spectacular show. Visitors, both regular folks and scientists, to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park are able to witness the active volcanic personality and the formation of new cinder cones, glowing pit craters, rivers of lava and fountains of spatter. This volcanic paradise shows off 70 million years of volcanism, but was only established as a National Park in 1916. It stretches over 333,086 acres (505.36 square miles) and has two active volcanoes. While Kīlauea is one of the world’s most active volcanoes and has been in nearly continuous eruption since 1983, Mauna Loa is the world’s most massive volcano. Hawaii Volcanoes National Park has seven ecological zones, was designated an International Biosphere Reserve in 1980 and became a World Heritage Site in 1987. Welcome to the Big Island and volcanic paradise! We love these pics! [48 Photos]

Lava erupting from the Pu`u `O`o vent

View at dusk of the young Pu’u ‘O’o cinder-and-spatter cone. The fantastic fountain on Kilauea, Hawaii, is shooting up about 40 m high. Photo #1 by G.E. Ulrich/USGS

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Marvel at the Magnificent Marble Caves [35 PICS]

June 28th, 2011 Permalink

In Patagonia, South America, General Carrera Lake is shared by Argentina and Chile. But on the Chilean side of the beautiful emerald-green to turquoise-blue waters, there are breathtakingly beautiful marble caves carved into passageways and caverns. These amazing marble formations were sculpted by erosion into three main marble formations: La Capilla (the Chapel), El Catedral (the Cathedral), and La Cueva (the Cave). The impressive labyrinth of marble caves are large enough for a small boat to glide into. Here are those magnificent marble caves. [35 Photos]

Reserva Nacional Cavernas de Marmol - Lago General Carrera Cavernas de Marmol - Patagonia Chilena

Incredibly beauty to be found at the Marble Caverns on General Carrera Lake in Patagonia, Chile. Photo #1 by © Jorge Leon Cabello

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Multicolored Martian Landscape? Nope. Fly Geyser in the Nevada Desert

March 30th, 2011 Permalink

Mother Nature didn’t create this bizarre geothermal wonder located in the Nevada desert, but neither did aliens. The vividly multicolored Fly Geyser phenomena is the result of an accident by man. Since the 1960s, the volcano-shaped Fly Geyser has continuously spewed hot water, as if morphing the land and environment into its own ecosystem and desert habitat.

Fly Geyser Timed Exposure

Mother Nature didn’t create this geothermal wonder, but neither did aliens. In 1916, a rancher drilled a well in hopes of turning the desert into a fertile wetland, but accidentally hit a geothermal pocket of water. It wasn’t until 1964 that boiling water started to escape to the surface and that is how this geothermal wonder came to be. It’s located on private property, the Fly Ranch. This phenomena has been named Fly Geyser in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada, located about 20 miles north of Gerlach. Photo #1 by wallpaperpimper

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Live Dangerously & Ride the Lightning! [45 Wicked Pics]

March 18th, 2011 Permalink

Whammo! Zap! Strike! Yikes! Live Dangerously — Ride the Lightning! Spring is nearly here in the U.S. which means rain, but sometimes the rain doesn’t sweep in nice and gentle. Sometimes storms are wicked dangerous. One thing most all of us have in common worldwide is thunderstorms and the lightning that comes with those storms. The National Weather Service reports more than 3,000 deaths a year from lightning strikes, with 4-5 times many more people injured by lightning. Yet we are spellbound, staring at the awesome scary power of lightning. Some photographers are great at capturing that split second of nature’s zapping fury. Here are 45 wicked pics of lightning. We love these pics!

Lightning - Living Dangerously

Lightning – Living Dangerously. Photo #1 by TED

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24 Amazing Auroras: Aurora Borealis & Aurora Australis

February 17th, 2011 Permalink

We’ve collected 24 stunning auroras; either Auroras Borealis – the northern lights – or Aurora Australis – the southern lights. We love these pics!
[24 Photos]

Aurora Australis Over South Pole Telescope

Aurora Australis blankets the sky overhead of the 10-meter South Pole Telescope at Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station, Antarctica. Like its more familiar counterpart, the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, the Aurora Australis is caused by the solar wind passing through the upper atmosphere. But the Aurora Australis is much less frequently observed because so few people live in Antarctica during the austral winter. Photo #1 by Keith Vanderlinde, National Science Foundation

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The Champagne Pool = New Zealand’s Stunning Geothermal Wai-O-Tapu Wonderland

February 12th, 2011 Permalink

This geothermal pool, called The Champagne Pool in New Zealand is lovely, perhaps romantic? The water bubbles much like a bubbly glass of champagne from which it gets its name. But before you take a dip, you might like to know it’s hot — over 160 °F and the colors, well . . . some of them come from arsenic and sulfide deposits. It was formed by a hydrothermal eruption 900 years ago. It’s in a crater with a diameter of about 213 feet; the geothermal pool is 230 feet deep. These sacred waters are the most colorful geothermal area in the New Zealand. It’s known as the Champagne Pool at the Artist’s Palette at the Wai-o-tapu Thermal Wonderland. We love these pics!

Famous geothermal pool Waiotapu, New Zealand - The Champagne Pool

Famous geothermal pool Waiotapu, New Zealand – The Champagne Pool. Photo #1 by Christopher Schoenbohm

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Double Rainbow Over Castle Geyser

Steam phase eruption of Castle Geyser shows a double rainbow at Yellowstone National Park. Photo by Mila Zinkova