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Cape Cod Cape Cod’s Black Magic

If you are standing one evening on a Harwich shore, and, looking off towards Monomoy, suddenly see the shrubs elongate themselves into trees, and sand dunes on the far eastern horizon seem to be mysteriously suspended in the air over water as still as a mirror, and then suddenly these strange sights vanish, you are witnessing one of Cape Cod’s famous mirages.

They are caused by the curve of the land, and by the refraction and reflection of light passing through layer upon layer of air of different temperature and density. Oftentimes, one may glimpse, from Plymouth, the whole of Provincetown, seemingly hanging upside down off the horizon, with the famed Provincetown monument pointing downwards towards the ocean.

We used to see this quite a bit when “steaming home” from a fishing trip. Especially during Winter when coming around the point at Monomoy and heading North to Harwich. The water towers and the large homes on the shore would appear to be floating above the horizon. Sometimes other boats and ships would appear this way as well, but these mirages were mostly seen when approaching land from seaward.

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Posted by Cape Cod - (website) on 03/27/06
Categories: NatureWeatherWeird
Keywords: weather, nature, weird


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