Today has been a long day, with a complete replacement of my computers custom water cooling system. The pumps died and there was algae build up, so I spend most of today repairing my equipment… so today’s snowflake is a small one, but definitely in the “unique” category. View large! (press the "L" key to view in Lightbox mode)
An iron, a shoe, a slug perhaps? There are a few things that come to mind when I look at this snowflake, an odd-looking example of an “arrowhead” crystal. A rare find and while it might be as colourful or as elaborate as some, it’s great to feature it here!
Arrowhead crystals are usually born out a column-type snowflake, with an opposite growth direction. The long side of the column grows outward at a faster rate than the short side, and while you can’t clearly see a column in this image, there are other tell-tale signs. Arrowhead crystals usually show “crystal twinning” in the form of a line that separate the two halves, running down the center. The top half of this arrowhead is under-formed when compared to the bottom half, so the separation feature is skewed higher. Can you spot it?
It’s the “weird ones” that keep me curious, and I’m looking forward to the end of winter when we see the warmer temperatures that create oddities like this. This particular snowflake was sitting on the backburner from last March, and I’ve always been pondering what the final image would look like. My curiosity is sated, at least for today!
The weird and wonderful world of snowflakes is documented quite well in my book Sky Crystals: www.skycrystals.ca/ – if you think this is beautiful, just wait until you get your hands on the book… with equal parts science, photography techniques and awesome photos like this one. :)
snowflake, snow, flake, icr, crystal, arrowhead, winter, macro, nature, sky, water, frozen, fractal, focus stacking, MP-E