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SunsetWx Can Forecast Picture-Perfect Sunsets



There are a number of websites and apps out there that help you track sunset and sunrise times so that you can plan your shoots around specific golden hour lighting. SunsetWx is a new website that takes things to the next level: it can forecast the quality of the upcoming sunset in your area (in the United States).

Created by three Pennsylvania-based meteorologists, the sunrise and sunset models take into account things like humidity, pressure changes, and clouds at various levels in the atmosphere. Wispy, high-altitude clouds are indications of a “high quality” sunset/sunrise, while low and thick clouds lower the score. Forecasts are displayed as a color-coded map of the continental US — a better sunset is indicated by warmer colors.


You can read a detailed explanation of how the model works on the SunsetWx website. There’s also a case study PDF that shows photos that were taken side-by-side with the SunsetWx map generated at the time.

“We take it for granted sometimes that we have nature and weather around us,” co-founder Jacob DeFlitch tells Slate. “This, hopefully, will help people to go out and see for themselves.”

Head on over to the SunsetWx website if you’d like to examine the latest forecasts for where you live.