Amanda Curtis from Long Island, New York was enjoying a normal morning waiting for her train at the Glen Cove train station when she saw something that took her breath away: a rare quadruple rainbow.
Amanda quickly reached for her phone and snapped a photo of the incredible phenomenon. She shared this photo to her Twitter account where it went viral.
At first people were skeptical about the magical photo, after all where do you find the pot of gold when there are so many different rainbows to follow? In all seriousness, it is very rare to see a quadruple rainbow, which is why some were originally adamant that Amanda used Photoshop or shot the photo through glass to cause the reflection.
In an interview with the Weather Channel Amanda stuck true to her story, saying she took the unaltered photo in the open air. According to Paul Neiman, a research meteorologist at NOAA’s Earth System Research Observatory, Amanda is telling the truth and the photo is very real.
Paul Neiman even posted a detailed explanation to his Facebook page explaining how and why quadruple rainbows form. He wrote, “This is an outstanding example of a primary and secondary rainbow (relatively common) occurring together with their reflected-light counterparts (quite rare).”
He goes on to explain in depth how primary and secondary rainbows form, ending with an explanation for the even rarer reflected-light rainbows shown in this photo, “…a large glassy-smooth water surface is required behind the observer. This smooth water surface reflects the sun, such that a second solar light source is generated.”
That large glassy body of water is Oyster Bay, located only 2 miles from where the photo was taken.
This reminds us of another rare quadruple rainbow captured back in 2010…