A spectacular view of Chicago

March 5, 2014 • 3:29 pm

Alert reader Su called my attention to this stunning photo of my town that appeared on the site Twisted Sifter.  It was taken by Mark Hersch—with an iPhone! The details:

Taken from his window seat (with his iPhone) as he approached O’Hare, amateur photographer Mark Hersch captured this incredible photo that shows the famous Chicago skyline reflected in Lake Michigan below, just as the sun sets above. Talk about perfect timing!

And if you look really closely, you can see a second airplane in the center of the image, soaring above the clouds as well! Mark tells the Daily Mail:

“I was flying home to Chicago from a business trip recently. It was a cloudy day, late in the afternoon. We were flying eastbound, made a pass by O’Hare International Airport, then made a sweeping 180-degree left turn over Lake Michigan for our final westward approach into the airport. I looked down and through a narrow break in the clouds, I saw the shadow of the Chicago skyline projecting onto the lake. Oddly enough, I am a very frequent flyer and almost always sit in an aisle seat, but on this flight there were only window seats available.”

Can you find the other airplane? I did! (It’s harder than a nightjar.)


32 thoughts on “A spectacular view of Chicago

        1. Hmmm ,I have a vague memory of someone proposing once that the idea of Asgard may have arisen from seeing mirages of Iceland projected into the sky as seen from coastal Norway, and perhaps later prompting people to try voyages out west from the Norwegian coast.
          I’ve heard much sillier-sounding apologetics.

  1. Living in Urbana, all my work travel takes me through O’Hare. I love flying into Chicago on a clear night, and taking a lap out over the Lake. I’ve never seen a photo that captures that view, but it is unforgettable.

  2. What a great shot! I always sit in the aisle seat too because of the frequent peeing from the frequent water consumption. I’ve gotten some cool pictures over Hawaii but this one is stunning!

  3. I hate to disillusion you but I found the plane immediately, nightjars need not fear the competition!

      1. In a Piper Cub, you can swing the door up, have the pilot put the plane in a slip, and have a clear view of the ground below for analytical aerial photography. Be sure to keep your seatbelt fastened, and make sure all papers (maps, flight plans, etc.) and other items (camera bag) are secure before opening the door, because it’s going to get very windy and the floor is going to tilt….


    1. That plane you found has clear windows! They just appear too small to recognize from that distance.

  4. I don’t know why but I was looking for something a little larger…no, much larger. As the bride said to the groom: “That thing’s tiny”.

      1. No, my bride and I lived together for many years before marriage, so there were no surprises there. Probably would never have gotten married if not for the tax advantages, btw. We just passed our 27th year, so I can’t be that disappointing.

        1. I might add that many of my atheist friends have been couples for decades, while many of my religious friends/relatives have been divorced several times. Weird how that works.

  5. That photo would make an excellent cover for a science fiction book. O.K. some one write the story to go with it…

  6. I’m not saying it was photoshopped, but I’m puzzled how there could be that much light behind the city in the reflection give the amount of cloud cover.

  7. I’ve made this turn into O’Hare many times over the years. It goes over the United Center. If I’ve IDed the “plane” its in the wrong place. The image is inverted not reversed. A plane ahead on the approach would not be to the left of this plane heading south of the Sears (Willis) Tower. If its departing O’Hare it would have been heading west or perhaps north.

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