Watch a vast sheet of fog sweep through the Grand Canyon

Image: Reuters/NPS photo by Erin Whittaker
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Fog is among the most mysterious and eerie of Mother Nature’s children. Combine it with one of the greatest geological marvels in the world—the Grand Canyon—and you have a true wonder to behold.

Yesterday, a thick layer of fog glided through the canyon, making the burnt orange formations look as if they were floating, not totally unlike the mountains in James Cameron’s Avatar  (which were based on real mountains in China).

Behold the majesty of planet Earth in this time lapse made by the Grand Canyon National Park:

The incredible fog-scape is created by a process called cloud inversion. It happens when moisture condenses into fog and is held in place by warmer air resting on top of it. While it’s a rare occurrence, it did just happen in the Grand Canyon in December. It’s been a good few months for fog lovers.

Watch the time lapse again, but this time do it while listening to one of the more beautiful passages of literature, Gandalf telling Pippin about “the grey rain-curtain of this world,” from The Lord of the Rings. Sometimes reality can match the poetry of fantasy.