In the desert

Inferior Mirage

Cecil took this amazing photograph of antelope in the desert.....(get details)

Do mirages only happen in the desert?

Deserts are a good place to look for mirages, but mirages can happen almost anywhere. Maybe we hear more about desert mirages because they have a strong pull on the imagination. It's much more interesting to read a story about a desperately thirsty wagon train struggling across the desert to what they think is a lush oasis than to hear me talk about how I thought I saw a puddle in the parking lot at the grocery store.

Inferior Mirage
Nevada Desert
November, 1849

I took this photo in the desert outside of Palm Springs, California.

"We..saw here, for the first time, [a] mirage the a sheet of water which all of us believed was Owen's Lake...they who gazed upon it had never know what wondrous power it is capable of strong was the impression of reality that disillusionment did not come until long after nightfall...."

From Valley of Salt, Memories of Wine: A Journal of Death Valley, 1849, by Louis Nusbaumer, edited by George Koenig. Page 36.

This account was written by Brier Jr., a member of a wagon train that was traveling west to California. The travelers were elated when the first saw what they believed was Owen's Lake, believing they were already in California. In fact, the party did not reach California until much later, after a long and difficult trek through Death Valley.

Report a mirage!

Have you seen a mirage in the desert? Report it to the Mirage Reporter!

Mirage Observer

In the city

At the lake

In the country

By the ocean

You've come to the desert

Make your own mirage!

Caught on tape (or film)

Mirage flipbooks

Is it a fake?

Why, do I wonder?

Eric the Red

Suspend your disbelief!

Mirage Reporter