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12/01/2013 12:52 pm ET

Hawaii Vog Makes For Incredible Skylines And Horrible Air Quality

Hawaii has a love-hate relationship with "vog."

On one hand, vog (or volcanic smog) is basically harmful volcanic air pollution. As Kilauea volcano on Hawaii's Big Island oozes lava, it emits sulfur dioxide that reacts with sunlight, oxygen, dust particles and moisture to form an aerosol, better known as vog.

When this vog wafts over the islands, it often leaves people with headaches, watery eyes, sore throats, and can make it very difficult to breathe. (It's like being in a smoky room, but it's everywhere.)

On the other hand, vog is the world's best real-life photo filter. When sunlight (or moonlight) passes through the vog-polluted air, it can create some truly mind-boggling horizons.

In short, vog is bad for your health, but oh-so-good for brilliantly colored -- or ominously muted -- skylines.

Below, take in 10 wondrous views of Hawaii's voggy skies, without any of the health hazards:

Purple Haze
hawaii vog

Silver Stillness
hawaii vog

Golden Hour
vog

Smokey Sunrise
hawaii vog

Rainbow In The Sky
hawaii vog

Lava Flow In The Twilight
hawaii vog

Blankets Of Grey
hawaii vog

Tiger-Striped Sunset
hawaii vog

Reflections In The Lake
hawaii vog

Red Into The Night
hawaii vog

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