In Plettenberg Bay, as days grow shorter, the skies at sunset glow with the most spectacular hues, blooming with pinks, reds and oranges.
Why are autumn and winter sunsets more vivid than any other time of the year?
First, a lesson in the colours of the rainbow: Blue light has a short wavelength, so it gets scattered easiest by air molecules, such as nitrogen and oxygen. Longer wavelength lights — reds and oranges — are not scattered as much by air molecules.
During sunrise and sunset, light from the sun must pass through much more of our atmosphere before reaching our eyes, so it comes into contact with even more molecules in the air. Much of the blue light gets scattered away, making the reds and oranges more pronounced.
During this time of year, weather patterns allow for dry, clean air to sweep across the country, and more colours of the spectrum make it through to our eyes without getting scattered by particles in the air, producing brilliant sunsets and sunrises that can look red, orange, yellow or even pink and purple.