Arctic Sea Smoke

Arctic Sea Smoke
Rockland Breakwater

Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse flashes its guiding light just above the Arctic sea smoke as dawn breaks over Penobscot Bay (Photo by Ann-Marie Trapani)

On January 24, 2011, the Midcoast Maine region endured its coldest day to date this winter.

In Rockland, temperatures registered an icy -9 degrees by dawn, with a wind chill of -24 degrees that only served to add to the bitterness of the morning.

Frigid scenes abounded along the coast, but none greater than the appearance of Arctic sea smoke that reigned over Rockland Harbor and West Penobscot Bay at sunrise.

These pictures by Ann-Marie Trapani show Rockland Breakwater, Owls Head and West Penobscot Bay inundated by the presence of Arctic sea smoke.

For those not familiar with Arctic sea smoke, it is described by the National Weather Service as “a type of advection fog that forms primarily over water when cold air passes across warmer waters.”

Rockland Breakwater

The Arctic sea smoke was so thick at times it obscured Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse (Photo by Ann-Marie Trapani)

Arctic sea smoke

A spectacular scene played out over Penobscot Bay on the frigid morning of January 24, 2011 (Photo by Ann-Marie Trapani)