Saturday, February 15, 2014

Water Crystals

Daily winter visits to Halibut Point reveal unpredictable transformations of water into ice and snow, as rearranged by wind and sun.
On this day the coldest elements have solidified in an arc around cattails. A pressure fringe along the rim outlines an ice field floating like a diminutive polar continent.
The variety of ways that water freezes makes a fairy-tale science of crystallization. When it happens in the clouds we get snow which, falling in moderate amounts, accentuates earth lines and colors.
Snow during the night decorates the achievement of a tree growing out of a quarry wall. As the day unfolds this confection will melt away.
Scientifically observed, water in all its states is colorless. Artistically, it's magic. Like everything else it shrinks as it cools. Then poof, uniquely, it becomes more spacious as it solidifies to float on its liquid self before sublimating back to the air. 


Reacher Creature

Grownups assert that every snowflake is different, which makes the impressionable mind go fuzzy. A Wikipedia contributor rolls out the numbers: 1019 (10 quintillion) water molecules make up a typical snowflake, which grows at different rates and in different patterns depending on the changing temperature and humidity within the atmosphere that the snowflake falls through on its way to the ground. Aha. 1019 makes for a stupendous number of design combinations and permutations. Enjoy the show!

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