"I ran to the window and wasn't even completely dressed and I just freaked out," says Vicki Tebbetts.
She remembers running down the hill from their Cabot home in 10 below weather towards a sunrise unlike any she'd seen before.
"It was there. Front and center it was there -- three of them. Symmetrical, lit up in the most eerie way," she says.
What looked like three suns was actually a phenomenon commonly known as a sundog. The brilliant sight resonated on an emotional level.
"Well, my mom had just passed away two days before and I did really feel like some meaning was attached to that, and that nature was sending me a message that everything was going to be okay," she says.
Her photo was seen and shared by thousands of you from our WCAX Facebook page that morning, with many of you sending us your own photos of the sundogs and others asking what they are and how they're formed.
"Ice crystals in the air act as prisms, so the sunlight comes in and bounces off and refracts through the ice crystal, and just like a prism, it makes that light go in a slightly different direction and gives us those sundogs and halos that we saw," explains National Weather Service meteorologist Andy Nash.
It isn't just a winter phenomenon. Nash says in the summer, high thin clouds also cause them. But on very cold days, the water vapor in the air turns to small ice crystals, known as diamond dust.
"We have these ice crystals close to the surface, just drifting in the air, and so it's the sunlight going through those small little ice crystals because it's so cold and giving us this affect," he says, "and that's why it looks so brilliant because from our eye it looks like it's so close to us."
And it isn't just the sun. Because any light source can create this phenomenon, some of our viewers send us photos of moondogs. Nash says also sometimes people mistake the halos for rainbows.
"Rainbows are always opposite of the sun, halos are around the sun," he says.
But if we keep getting these cold temperatures with diamond dust in the atmosphere, he says we'll probably see more of these sundogs.
One more thing Nash says you're going to want to think about if you want to look at a sundog, you are going to be staring at the sun, so you're going to want to make sure that you put your hand up to block out the sun. Then you can look at the sundogs and the halo more safely.
Sunday, March 9 2014 10:43 PM EDT2014-03-10 02:43:23 GMT
The Burlington Yoga Conference began Saturday at UVM's Davis Center. The event gives participants a chance to connect the mind body and soul through workshops they may not have access to on a daily basis.More >>
The Burlington Yoga Conference began 6 years ago and has become a staple in the community.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 7:56 PM EDT2014-03-09 23:56:33 GMT
Flags were flying on the Statehouse steps Sunday afternoon as more than 500 people gathered for the Gun Owners of Vermont Rally."Vermonters -- not just hunting Vermonters who happen to have firearms forMore >>
A trio of gun control measures may have gotten the green light from Burlington voters on Town Meeting Day, but the charter changes face strong opposition across the state, and a possible uphill battle at the Statehouse.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 7:43 PM EDT2014-03-09 23:43:32 GMT
Is the marketing behind Electronic Cigarettes aimed at kids?New York Senator Chuck Schumer (D-New York) says the industry's trendy packaging and flavors like bubble gum and cotton candy aren't foolingMore >>
Schumer is co-sponsoring a Senate bill that would ban e-cigarette marketing aimed at kids.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 7:42 PM EDT2014-03-09 23:42:02 GMT
Senator Bernie Sanders is among a group of Senators set to hold an "all-nighter" to call attention to climate Change.Members of the so-called Senate Climate Action Task Force -- nearly two dozen in allMore >>
Senator Bernie Sanders is among a group of Senators set to hold an "all-nighter" to call attention to climate Change.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 7:40 PM EDT2014-03-09 23:40:46 GMT
A Chimney fire is the likely cause of a blaze that destroyed a home in St. Albans Town.The owner of the home on Pike Drive called for help a little after 9:30 a.m. Sunday. When firefighters arrived theyMore >>
A Chimney fire is the likely cause of a blaze that destroyed a home in St. Albans Town.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 7:38 PM EDT2014-03-09 23:38:52 GMT
Jazz fingers, dance moves -- and plenty of passion. The Urban Reach Dance Convention is giving aspiring dancers the chance to learn from some of the music industry's most acclaimed teachers, who have workedMore >>
Aspiring dancers hit the floor this weekend at the 8th annual Urban Reach Dance Convention.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 6:08 PM EDT2014-03-09 22:08:59 GMT
This morning, Channel 3 has learned there will NOT be a bus strike Monday morning in Chittenden County. CCTA officials told us in a statement that after 19 hours of negotiations that went into the morningMore >>
Sunday morning CCTA officials announced that after a marathon negotiation session they delivered a complete contract proposal to the union.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 2:52 PM EDT2014-03-09 18:52:05 GMT
Governor Peter Shumlin was in Rhode Island over the weekend. His office says the Governor was at Brown University in Providence taking part in a forum with the Rhode Island Governor. He is expected toMore >>
Governor Peter Shumlin was in Rhode Island over the weekend.More >>