Alpine massifs above low level haze

Alpine massifs above low level haze

by Hans Volkert, DLR-IPA, Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany

From Watzmann to Wetterstein: view westward from a height of 10 km on 11 October 2007, 14:30 UT.

The forward scattering of sunlight, which is caused by a large number of aerosol particles (moist haze) in Alpine valleys, gives the mountain massifs a rather plastic appearance. The hazy area in the foreground lies above the Koenigsee lake; behind it the Watzmann, Hochkalter, Loferer Steinberge and Wilder Kaiser massifs loom up behind one other to the right of the centre line. Behind them is the wide Inn valley, which extends right across the picture. In the far distance in the middle of the picture, the Wetterstein massif projects upwards with the Zugspitze mountain as its highest peak. The left side shows Steinernes Meer, Leoganger Steinberge and a sequence of at least 10 mountain chains that extend as far as Kellerjoch, which is in front of the whitish area of haze above Innsbruck. The noon sounding from Munich showed that relative humidity exceeded 75% up to 1,400 m above sea level, with distinctly lower values above (less than 20 %). The view is from an aircraft window approximately 10 km to the east of the Salzach valley.

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