San Diego's Spectacular December Sunrises and Sunsets Explained

Over the past week, the vibrant sunrises and sunsets in San Diego have been picture perfect

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    NEWSLETTERS

    If you’ve looked up at the San Diego sky during the early morning or late afternoon over the past week or so, chances are you’ve seen some spectacular sunrises and sunsets.

    For the last several days, the sky above America’s Finest City has boasted an incredibly colorful array of shades – from glowing oranges and yellows in the morning, to vibrant pinks, reds and purples in the evenings.

    But, why, exactly are those sunrises and sunsets so breathtaking lately?

    Spectacular Sunrises and Sunsets

    [DGO] Spectacular Sunrises and Sunsets
    NBC 7's Megan Tevrizian speaks with NBC 7's Jodi Kodesh about the science behind the incredible sunsets and sunrises taking over San Diego's skies.

    According to NBC 7 San Diego’s meteorologist Jodi Kodesh, the recent amazing sunsets are a result of warm, moist air flowing into San Diego from the south.

    “Sunlight consists of many different colors in the spectrum. Blue has the shortest wavelength, which is why we see the most of it. At sunrise and sunset, however, when the sun angle is low, the blue lights get scattered easily, allowing more of the red and oranges to reach our eyes,” explained Kodesh.

    Jodi Kodesh's Morning Forecast for Tuesday Dec. 17, 2013

    [DGO] Jodi Kodesh's Morning Forecast for Tuesday Dec. 17, 2013
    Jodi Kodesh's Morning Forecast for Tuesday Dec. 17, 2013

    “It’s the clouds that are coming at us from the south that are acting as the culprit to the scattering of the blue light. We can thank them for the pretty sunrises and sunsets!” she added.

    Kodesh says these views are typical for this time of year – at least in San Diego.

    "We have the real high clouds – that’s one part of the recipe. We have a very low sun angle, so we have sunrise and sunset where the sun angle is low, and then we have that scattering of the light waves and we end up with the red and the yellow and the orange colors," Kodesh explained.

    As long as the clouds stay high, these red sunsets and sunrises should last through winter, which is plenty of time for NBC 7 viewers to submit their incredible sunset photographs via our Facebook page, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #SanDiegoGram.

    Now, as for the current warm winter temperatures, Kodesh says  those conditions are expected to shift within the next few days.

    By Wednesday, a drastic drop in temperatures is expected. Showers are likely to roll in by Thursday, with temperatures dropping into the upper 50s. Get weather updates here.

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