Paradise in Park City: A Sun Dog Sighting

Sun Dog

Kyle Jenkins, Summit Sotheby’s International Realty Photographer

Park City has a healthy lifestyle. Our strides are a little slower and our air is clean. We are passionate about hiking, biking, and of course, skiing the best snow on earth. Avoiding the hustle and bustle is why we live here, and even when this resort town gets busy during the winter months we are constantly reminded that we live in a little paradise. This fact is hard to forget when you see something like this on your way to “work.”

A sun dog.

What is a sun dog?

In my 12 years as a resident of Park City, I have never witnessed what is commonly called a sun dog. What is that, exactly?


A sun dog is a colorful, bright light seen in the sky, also termed parhelia. While some are as bright and colorful as rainbows, a sun dog is not a type of rainbow. Similar to rainbows, however, sun dogs also result from a prism effect. A rainbow is typically seen when raindrops create a prism effect with the sun’s light. Sun dogs are made visible due to ice crystals. Sun dogs flank a 22-degree halo, the most common of the ice halos, seen today with a tangent arc shining above the halo.

Nature creates some astounding sights and those of us in Park City are fortunate to witness them from time to time. Today was one of those days. My thought was “if this isn’t paradise, I don’t know what is”. Sun dogs. Just one of the many things that makes Park City a truly special place.

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