On average, such distinct halos are often reported several times a week across the entire globe, and can occur even in relatively mild weather, providing the air several kilometers above is sufficiently cold. A distinct halo was spotted in Yamal in northern Siberia on Tuesday, barely noticeable one was photographed in the eastern Siberian city of Irkutsk, and an impressive one was witnessed in Saskatoon in Canada over the weekend.
“The appearance of the halos can vary – from pillars to arcs to circles to blots. It is very hard to predict when all factors will come together for one to appear, but sometimes you can see several in one winter,” said Sheporenko.
Documented descriptions date back to the ancient Greeks, and a halo features in William Shakespeare’s Henry VI, where he mentions its appearance ahead of a key battle in the War of the Roses.
Across most world cultures, it was regarded as on omen, or harbinger of cold weather - logically, as the crystals above required to create the halo, often descend onto the ground as snow and rain. But Sheporenko says this is not the case this time.
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