A Huge Sahara Dust Cloud Is Making Europe Look Like Mars & Everything Has A Sepia Filter
"It's been very post-apocalyptic."
A dust storm from the Sahara Desert is moving through Europe and making the sky look like a scene out of The Martian or Blade Runner 2049.
The massive orange-red dust cloud has been blowing westward across Europe this week, transforming the skies over Portugal, Spain, France and Switzerland as it makes its way north, towards the U.K.
The dust cloud is barely visible as a haze in some places, but in other regions such as southern Spain, it's so thick that the sky is a bright shade of orange. It's also made for some strange views in the mountains, where snow hills look like sand dunes because of the dust.
"It's been very post-apocalyptic," Facebook user Sarah Jackson wrote in a post on Tuesday from Spain.
Spain is roughly northwest of the Sahara Desert and it got the most of the storm, with dirt and residue falling over cars and buildings as well.
People have been posting no-filter photos on social media to show just how obvious the dust cloud's impact is in the south of Spain.
This kind of far-travelling Sahara dust cloud happens once or twice a year, according to a weather expert who spoke to the Associated Press.
Nevertheless, people are amazed by what they are seeing, especially if it's their first time.
"It's been an orangy-yellow kind of a day here as the Sahara moved in!" Jackson wrote in her Facebook post. "Crazy madness!"
"Wow you don’t want to be breathing that in," commented one user on the post.
"The Sahara doing its thing. I once experienced the tail end of this in Morocco. Of course much closer but as you say Sarah Jackson quite a strange moment if you’ve never seen it before as I hadn’t," said another in the same thread.
The dust cloud has "degraded" the air quality in Portugal, France and Spain on its way through, according to the European Union’s Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service.
#SaharanDust over Iberian Peninsula/France & transport to Mediterranean + northern/central parts of Europe predicted for a couple more days then clearing over the weekend. @CopernicusECMWF Atmosphere Monitoring Service @ECMWF AOD forecast 16/03 00 UTC https://atmosphere.copernicus.eu/charts/cams/aerosol-forecasts?facets=undefined&time=2022031600,3,2022031603&projection=classical_europe&layer_name=composition_aod550\u00a0\u2026pic.twitter.com/PPpmgpFJLJ— Mark Parrington (@Mark Parrington) 1647440151
The dust cloud is expected to continue into Thursday before it blows over.
That means there's still a chance to take a sepia photo without the filter in parts of Europe — although you'll definitely want to be wearing a mask when you go out.