Our amazing planet.

Another Double Rainbow Photographed in Wyoming

Another double rainbow in Wyoming, photographed on July 18, 2012.
While on vacation on July 18, Texas native Jonathan Boening took this photograph of a double rainbow on a drive to Yellowstone National Park. (Image credit: Jonathan Boening)

Perhaps Wyoming should brand itself as the land of double rainbows.

On July 18, Texas native Jonathan Boening took this breathtaking photograph of a double rainbow while on vacation, driving toward Yellowstone National Park. "A fast-moving storm had just blown through the area," he told OurAmazingPlanet. "I was so utterly stunned when I saw it. I've never seen a full rainbow, much less two of them."

The sighting occurred on his way from Cheyenne to Jackson, Wyo. When he jumped out of the car to take a photograph of it, a powerful gust of wind from the storm caught the door and almost completely ripped it off, Boening said. "It wouldn't close after the incident, so I literally had to physically hold the car door closed all the way to Jackson!" he said. "It was worth it."

Later in the summer, on Sept. 1, Wyoming resident Jonmikel Pardo took a spectacular photograph of a double rainbow from his backyard in Lander, Wyo.

Boening takes nature photographs for fun, and used a Nikon D90 to capture the double rainbow, along Highway 191.

To see a rainbow, you need two elements: sunlight and raindrops. When sunlight passes through a prism — in this case, drops of water — some of the light is refracted, or bent, more than other portions. Light leaving the prism then spreads out into a continuous band of colors called a spectrum, which appears as a rainbow.

As in this case, sometimes a secondary bow forms outside the primary one, giving the look of a double rainbow. The second bow is always fainter and usually disappears more quickly than the primary.

Reach Douglas Main at dmain@techmedianetwork.com. Follow him on Twitter @Douglas_Main. Follow OurAmazingPlanet on Twitter @OAPlanet. We're also on Facebook and Google+.

Douglas Main
Douglas Main loves the weird and wonderful world of science, digging into amazing Planet Earth discoveries and wacky animal findings (from marsupials mating themselves to death to zombie worms to tear-drinking butterflies) for Live Science. Follow Doug on Google+.