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Hazy Memories of Blue Skies

Some people believe that persistent contrails are evidence of a secret government spraying program called “chemtrails,” which began in the 1990s for some purpose, such as weather control, population control, or more exotic purposes.

A common claim made by those believers is that chemtrails have persisted only in recent years, and back when they were young (usually implying sometime before the 90s), they remembered “blue skies”, which they don’t see anymore.

I live (in 2007) in Los Angeles. The sky is generally blue here. In fact, it’s blue about 300 days of the year. It’s often hazy in the morning. But I’d say the sky is blue, and if asked to recall what the color of the sky was, I think I’d say blue, especially if I were recalling a day at the beach or some such thing.

Were the skies different before 1980? Personal memory is not a good yardstick, so perhaps the photographic record is. Now, until recently, most of the photos people put online were from digital cameras, and hence quite recent. But now the older folks are starting to scan in their old photos, so we get things like this album:

This is a batch of photos from the 1960’s and earlier. While there is not much that looks like a contrail in any of the photos, there are a LOT of photos that show the kind of hazy sky that chemtrailers believe did not exist when they were young. In fact, nearly all the “blue sky” shots show some form of haze or cirrus clouds. The only time a sky approaches the “deep blue” of chemtrailers childhood imagination is when the camera is pointed nearly straight up, such as in the photo of the South Dakota capitol. Even there, you get the haze.

So why are there no persistent contrails? Well, it’s just no persistent contrails in the photos; it’s no contrails at all. In fact, there are no planes in the sky!

Here are some more albums of old photos
1979 http://picasaweb.google.com/photos.hall/Crete1979
1980 http://picasaweb.google.com/kldelpha/TripWest1980

Back to the claims of the chemtrailers. Are the skies different now? Sure, there is more air traffic, hence more contrails. But is there evidence of this? Look on picasaweb at people’s vacation photos. You see blue skies, hazy skies, and cloudy skies. You really don’t see many contrails.

Look for photos of places that people consider to be hotbeds of chemtrail activity. Any place you are familiar with, say San Diego. Look for photos of San Diego. How many have contrails in them? Almost none.

What does this mean? It means confirmation bias, it means selective memory. Most of the time the sky is hazy. Most of the time it does not have persistent contrails in it.

Sometimes, of course, they do. We can be selective with the past as well as the present. We don’t remember them because they are rare, but they are there:

Applegate Lake, 1981, persistent contrail above the horizon.

1970s – Two parallel contrails, with a third being formed

1969, morning contrails that will spread and cover the sky:

[UPDATE] People have been scanning and uploading more family albums over the past three years.  For many more (and better) old contrail photos, see:


[UPDATE] Here’s an interesting thread on ATS.


Which asked this question:

– My request is this; —– Post if you remember seeing these lines like we do now (gridded up sky’s with lines eventually turning a nice sunny day into something of a hazy/cloudy sky)

– OR – —– post if you remember not seeing anything like the lines and grids we see today.

Here’s the relevant results:

I’m 52 and I remember seeing them all the time when I was a kid in the ’60’s. I remember because I asked my dad, who was an engineer, to explain to me what caused them.

Yeah, I gotcha, many times for hours. Maybe most of the day, I don’t know, I never spent that much time looking at em.

I’m not epic old, but I do remember some contrails lasting for hours, arching over the sky and you could follow it right to the horizon.

The Glynco Naval Air Station was working in full force when I was born in 1947.
I am also in between Savannah and Jacksonville that are both homes to military air stations.
Yes I remember the contrails growing up and enjoyed seeing the jets in the sky.
We had many sightings a day due to being so close to the ocean,

I used to sky watch all the time with my friends when we were little kids… we all remember contrails in the sky and them lasting for a few minutes, perhaps up to an hour, but not the whole day, not EVER.

im not much older than you op im 25 and remember seeing them as a kid in the early 90s. i would watch as a plane approched a contrail and expected them to crash when it hit them.

I’m 51 & live in the South Pacific.
Down here there was only 1 overhead air route when I was a kid – between 2 cities 200 miles north & 200 miles south (and it’s still the same there now). I remember seeing long contrails along that route before I started working – so in the early 70’s and late 60’s – sometimes the one from the flight in 1 direction would still be there when the a/c went back in the opposite direction an hour later.
I remember them spreading out a little – but not over the “whole sky”

I’m in my 40s and grew up in SW PA. I used to love looking into the summer sky and seeing long CONTRAILs. I would follow them across the sky to see if the plane was still in the air. This isn’t a new phenomenon, they’ve been around for as long as I can remember!
This would be in the 70s. Yes, the skies around Pittsburgh weren’t THAT bad. You have to remember that the Steel mills were starting to shut down and the air quality started to improve.

I have been looking at blue skies for over 60 years. I can remember looking at a certain amount of contrails all my life. The sky was blue and I mean blue and sunny on a summers day. 15 years ago I started working what I call vampire hours. I slept alot of the days away and up about all night. I didn’t get to see much of the sky. This past year I have found myself unemployeed like so many others. I would get up in the morning to a nice spring or summer day which didn’t last past 10 am. I kept wondering what had changed I knew something had. Some days I will see contrails going in all directions within an hour the sky will be like a sheer white veil and never see the blue and sunny sky again. … I really miss my nice mornings and sunny skies.

I’ve been around for a while, now, and here in the inter-mountain west and the northern high plains I see no difference in the behavior of contrails. There are certainly MORE of them than in the 60’s and 70’s but they act the same as far as I can tell. And you can see a l-o-n-g way from a mountain top!

I’m 50, from Indiana US. I remember contrails just as they are today from my childhood. I had an interest in the planes over my head because my father commuted by plane for most of my childhood. There is always the wonder if Dad is in that plane over head. There are absolutely more planes now.

I was in the USAF from 1990 to 1996. I remember having a guy come into our unit that had a BS in aeronautical engineering, but he was enlisted. I was amazed that he didn’t apply for OCS since he would be able to. Anyway, me being a guy who didn’t have a BS I thought he would be a wealth of knowledge for the many questions I had. (there was no Google back then) I asked him why some contrails lasted a long time and why some went away quickly. He didn’t know. Now either he didn’t pay attention in class, or they didn’t teach him about that, but it doesn’t matter. I clearly remember being interested enough to ask this question in the early 90’s. Being 43 now, I have a hard time remembering what I had for breakfast, but that one memory seems to validate that persistent contrails have been around for a bit.

I’m only 37, but I do have a pilot’s license, and I have stared at the sky since I was old enough to roll over!
There are more lines, because we have more air traffic. Much, much, much more air traffic.
The lines are more persistent because the airliners are flying higher and faster than ever before. Plus, with more lines, the lines tend to drift and combine and kind of form a high hazy layer.

used to lie on my back and watch them fly over in the late 70’s early 80’s, the contrails would last or not as often as they do here now

I am 48 and I also remember watching airplanes with their contrails in the air but not in a way that I could play virtual chess with them.

I’m an old fart, I saw JFK’s funeral procession on b&w TV as a boy. I was very much a sky watcher in my youth but I do not recall if there was always mist behind planes. I know I’ve seen trails behind planes for a very long time, nothing new.

As a kid in the 70’s and 80’s I remember watching the contrails form behind aircraft high up in the sky. I mean so high you couldn’t always see the aircraft at the front making it. But I don’t remember them lasting all day or spreading out the way they do now. They seem to form lower these days too.

1st time i notified was around the age of 7, in 1984-85.
They lasted long enough.

I’m in my mid forties and don’t remember seeing long lasting contrails in the skies when I was at school.
I don’t remember it snowing before 1979 either.

No I don’t remember so many lines in the sky, before I ever had the internet, quite a few years ago now, I started noticing them, and no one influenced me.

There is no damn way chemtrails have been around since planes started flying. i used to see planes once in awhile with a normal contrail when I was a kid. Still see normal ones today. The ones where the ice melts about a mile behind the plane. I’d say 91 was the year we started seeing this crap that stretches across the sky intersecting all across the sky. Lingers allday long. No it was not always so. Any one who says it was. Is nothing more than wrong

Mid 30’s here and I remember bluer skies, then again when your younger everything seems brighter and more colorful.
Winters were alot colder and summers seemed cooler.

Seems like well over half the people there actually DO remember persistent contrails, just like today.

One of the guys who did not actually thinks they started in 1991. One of them thinks they started in 2010.

Pretty much all that demonstrates is the variability of memory. But if the majority in the conspiracy theory community remember them, then that seems pretty good evidence that they have always been there. Especially as it tallies with recorded history, and science.

52 thoughts on “Hazy Memories of Blue Skies

  1. Paul says:

    Hazy skies don’t really say much. What I would really like to see are the old photos of high-flying aircraft. Since air traffic has increased considerably over the decades seeing one in the sky 2-3 decades ago was certainly a rare sight, and an occasion to take a photograph of it.

    Where are all the old aircraft photos with contrails behind them? Maybe someone could start collecting those somewhere.

  2. Brad says:

    Can someone say “Photoshop”? HA! I don’t believe much in chemtrails, but in these modern times, photos ain’t evidence of shit. It would be so easy to photo shop a chemtrail/contrail.

  3. There would hardly be any need though, since contrails are a normal occurrence, and “chemtrails” look just like contrails.

  4. Ryan says:

    I remember as a kid reading a book about airplanes titled, “What is That? and it had a a picture of a Northwest Orient 727 leaving a big white contrail against a deep blue sky on the front cover. The picture must have been taken by another airline pilot flying just below (back then in the early 80’s there wasn’t RVSM, so if it were flying in the same direction, the plane would have been 4,000 below the 727). The old NW Orient colors are clearly visible (with the red tail) and I just thought that was the best picture ever of a contrailing aircraft, let alone a Boeing 727. I have exhauseted my efforts looking for this book and have not come across it since I was about 10. However, it was taken back in the golden era of 727 travel and looked pretty cool. I’m about 90% sure on the title of the book.


  5. Benjamin says:

    The skies are definitely not as blue as they were before the aerosol operations began.The clouds are also different.They have shapes,textures and formations that are inconsistent with “natural” condensation nuclei associated with normal clouds.

  6. MTH says:

    Too right Benjemin, especially with all the new formations, such as mamatus and punch clouds.

    They must think we are stupid.

    Aerosols are a very real problem.

  7. Those formations are not new. They have always existed, and are described in old books about the weather.

  8. MTH says:

    When I was younger, I wore shorts all summer and once or twice a week, there would be a big thunderstorm to clear the air. The winters were cold and frosty.

    In 2003 tempertures were lovely and hot as they should have been for a summer season, Europe had a huge heatwave, even though aerosols operations were taking place. I noticed my first one in Italy 2000/01, however I was too young to understand what was happening.

    The big change was in 2004, the same year Boscastle had a massive flood. Extreme downpours and constant grey skies since then. This year has been the worst by far, pretty extreme to be honest, especially since after the false flag volcano in Iceland.

    80 mm of rain from the end of March to mid June, then 2 months worth in a week. We had supercells and toranados in England, lots of flooding etc.

    Russia burns while China and Pakistan drown. Makes me laugh. It’s so obvious, now the UN “The Heroes” will step in and play the good guys.

    Bit of a tengent this thread to be honest but it’s funny how Haiti has lots of oil and precious metals. Afghanistan had one trillion dollars worth of minerals and Pakistan has the fith biggest deposits in the world. Coincidence, of course 😉

  9. MTH says:

    Yes, Ice crystal formations did occur, but they were rare occurences. Not the everyday crap we are dealing with now.

    Just like circumzenithal arcs, but I’ve seen so many this year that I’ve lost count.


  10. SR1419 says:

    Just curious…were there ever earthquakes, floods, forest fires before the UN existed?


  11. captfitch says:

    So are you going to come right out and say it?
    Some giant organization (the UN?) is purposefully casusing all of the weather problems with some sort of aerosol campaign?

  12. It’s a problem with lack of historical perspective. Russia has always burned. China and Pakistan have always drowned. It’s nothing new.

    Try google news archives for some perspective


    Even unusual weather is anything but – you get unusual weather every few years – or pretty much every day if you take a world wide perspective.


  13. MikeC says:

    Here’s an old document I found cleaning out junk – it shows the level of jet liner activity from 1965 to 2003, and was published by Boeing in 2004.

    Unfortunately the tabular figures are not available, but it’s pretty easy to see the general picture of how much aviation increased over those 38 years – in 1965 it looks like there were about 100-150,000 departures for about 200-300,000 hours, and in 2003 there were 16.9 million departures for 33.93 million hours.

    Even giving a generaous 150k & 300k for the 1965 levels that is a 110-fold increase – or 11,000% for those who prefer it that way.

    So yes, the skies were clearer 40 years ago!
    [file]https://contrailscience.com/wp-content/uploads/airline activity.pdf[/file]

  14. Here’s the salient image from that.

  15. Agenda 21 says:

    [Admin: Duplicate Comment deleted]

  16. Please don’t post the same thing in multiple pages. You can read my response to the first time you posted that here:


  17. D says:

    It’s not the “aerosols” that are the problem. It’s the metals that are in the spray that are of serious concern.
    These numbers have been quantified in Arizona and are all present in the air at alarming levels. While yes the amount of air planes in the air has risen significantly, claiming that these contrails or chemtrails (there IS a difference) are harmless is ludicrous. Especially when many scientists in the atomic age were developing methods to control the weather (all heavily documented).
    See: http://www.rense.com/general82/chemit.htm
    The results are there along with the process and what is involved. But just saying “aerosols” is a HUGE understatement and misleading. It’s the particulates -in- the aerosols that are falling to earth that can be quantified.

  18. SR1419 says:


    how do they know they anything they found in their HEPA filter came from a plane?

    These results are 3yrs old…why haven’t they been replicated repeatedly around the world?

    Perhaps you should consider another perspective on the “quantifiable” results of that test:


  19. MikeC says:

    The Arizona results are dis-info.

    Waht they ahve done is test the dust they have gotten from hteir HEPA filters and said that there’s “x” ppm of the material in hte air.

    But they have not actually established what the relative volume is in het air at all.

    To do that they would ahve to say what volume of air passed through their filters, and what the volumeor weight of dust is.

    For example (jsut to illustrate the math) let’s say they have 10 gm of dust, and it is 100,000ppm aluminium (10%) – so 1 gm of aluminium. If they had filtered 1 litre of air to get that then they could say that the air had 1 gm/litre aluminium. If they had to filter 1000 litres of air to get that 1 gm of aluminium then the amount of aluminium in the air would be 0.001gm/litre, and so on.

    The numbers they get for their samples are perfectly normal for dirt/dust, and are meaningless when talking about how much of the various substances there are in the air you are breathing unless they say how much air they filtered, and how much dust they collected.

  20. Alexey says:

    Judging by the today’s videoclip from BBC News (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-14041973), there seem to be a lot of dust in the air in Arizona. Or was it a “chemtrail” descended on Phoenix?

  21. Alexey says:

    This paper has just been published on-line in Science magazine. I wonder, will it make the news, like the last month paper on Aircraft-Induced Holes in Clouds?
    [img]https://contrailscience.com/wp-content/uploads/Screen shot 2011-07-21 at 20.37.05.png[/img]

  22. It will probably at least make the conspiracy theory sites, as it’s a nice simple “Stratospheric aerosols have increased, therefore chemtrails exist”.

    It is a very interesting paper. Previously the decline in global dimming has been used as an anti-chemtrail argument – but clearly this (on the face of it) throws that out the window. Total aerosols may have decreased, but stratospheric aerosols have increased.

  23. Alexey says:

    Actually, I’ve just found that the paper has been mentioned on BBC News website on Science & Environment pages: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-14235920

  24. fluffy lie says:

    shame on you bastards! Who give you the right to extinct our blue sky? Who give you the right to weaponize the world? Criminals and abusers, liers you shall dissapear from the face of Earth forever. In hell shall you end with all your relatives and progenitures and nevercome out of there. Amen

  25. captfitch says:

    if I ever start a band I shall call it “Fluffy Lie”.

    Best band name…. ever.

  26. Ross Marsden says:

    And those will be the lyrics of the title rap on the first album, “Shame on You …”
    I suggest this structure.

    Shame on you bastards!
    Who give you the right
    to extinct our blue sky?
    Who give you the right
    to weaponize the world?
    Criminals and abusers.

    Liers; you shall dissapear
    from the face of [the] Earth
    forever. In hell shall you end
    with all your relatives
    and progenitures and never
    come out of there. Amen

    (repeat v 1 and 2)
    (instrumental and fade)


  27. Jay Reynolds says:

    A well done video explaining some of the reasons that contrail frequency and persistence has increased.

  28. Antonio says:

    The reason why we get longer lasting contrails is GW. CO2 has increased global temperatures which in turn have caused more water to evaporate warming the atmosphere further (positive feedback loop) . Water vapour is the most abundant green house gas. The more vapour in the air the longer condensation trails will remain. When a plane crosses a section where relative humidity is low, the contrail will stop, only to be re-started as soon as the plane hits more humid air. You can see this and chemtrail believers think of it as the sprayers being switched on and off.

    Cooler Stratospheric conditions were predicted as a consequence of GW and this can now bee seen as more frequent and more intense Noctilucent Clouds (a type of Polar Stratospheric Cloud) which are now reaching record southern latitudes. These clouds also play a major role in Ozone depletion. It is not exactly known why there has been an increase of water vapour in the Stratosphere were humidity is usually nil but there are a couple of theories out there.

  29. Shokdee says:

    One sunny day about a decade ago in London town I looked up at the sky to see a long fluffy white contrail. Now I had seen many before but this one was lovely, low and really white. A few moments later I was stunned to see another one been laid in parallel. Immediately I realized they couldn’t be contrails – but what where they? A little later two more appeared at 90 degrees, forming a grid. As they hug up in the sky my brain raced and then it struck me – they must be creating a reference grid for the Red Arrows to do some spectacular air show in a day or so. A few hours later, looking up, they had dissipated – to leave the whole sky in a hazy gray. Anyways, I checked the news for verification of my idea, but no dignatories or special events happened in the next few days and I stored the experience for later. The later came a few years ago after waking up to the events of 9-11 and doing a lot of research. I was feeling depressed and wanted a break from the horror and on a web page somewhere I saw a tiny picture of sky with 4 criss-crossed contrails. A light went off in my brain – I’ve seen that before – and I clicked the image and discovered chemtrails. I now live in a remote part of Thailand, but even here the sky is a silvery haze, I seldom see a clear blue sky. I recall the deep blue sky of my youth with nostalgia now – oh dear spaceship Earth and it’s crew, what are they’re doing to us?

  30. JFDee says:

    Shokdee said:
    “Immediately I realized they couldn’t be contrails”.

    Why couldn’t they? Because they were parallel?

    Many commercial planes are using defined routes, or they request a course that saves them time and fuel by taking advantage of favorable winds.

    So why should parallel lines be unusual? It’s two or more planes taking the same course. And you certainly know that there is a vast amount air traffic over Great Britain. Most flights between Europe and Northern America are crossing it.

    Have a look at the material on this site. Most of your concerns are discussed anywhere here.

    Regarding “grids” see:

    Regarding air traffic over GB see:

  31. Basil says:

    I am somewhat amused by the fact that there are folks who will deny climate change due to industry, but affirm climate change due to government/NWO geoengineering. Why? It’s saying in effect “billions of tons of fossil fuels being burned can’t change the climate, but spraying stuff in the upper atmosphere can.” Well, in that case may I suggest that aircraft flying up there are spraying exhaust fumes all the time, and that is far more likely to have an effect on the climate than spraying mysterious stuff up there.

  32. Basil says:

    Also, I remember seeing persistent contrails when I was a boy in the 1980s.

  33. Jay Reynolds says:

    An interesting discussion of scattering here, references to terpenes from trees:

  34. josh says:

    Folks, you can look it up. They are spraying barium chloride, just google it. It absorbs incoming solar radiation. I won’t speculate on WHY, because I have no facts. But barium is what they are spraying, look it up. Somethings going on, weather control or otherwise. And folks are too ignorant to realize there are CHEMTRAILS and CONTRAILS. 2 different things.

  35. Strawman says:

    “Google it” doesn’t do much to back up an argument, or provide proof.

    There is zero evidence of what you are claiming so far. Making “google it” all the weaker.

  36. MikeC says:

    So where’s the tanks on a/c for holding barium chloride? It’s toxic, so where;’s the people in hazmat suits dealing with it as it is loaded?

    I’m pretty sure we all know contrails and chemtrails are 2 different things – there is a great deal of verifiable evidence supporting the existence of contrails.

    There is not one single piece of verifiable evidence supporting the existence of chemtrails – ever.

    That is sufficient distinction for most people to understand the difference – one exists, the other is a hoax.

  37. MyMatesBrainwashed says:

    Josh, you’re wrong. Google it.

  38. Strawman says:


  39. Anonymous says:

    At the speed it was going you didn’t give it enough time to come into the frame. This is easily proved by watching the roof line when you pivoted 180-degrees, After turning around you focused on a different and lower part of the roof with the same styling, this can be seen from 2:05 – 2:10. Then pausing briefly on that roof section which didn’t give the plane enough time to come into view. After that you moved the view even further in front keeping well ahead of the slow moving plane.

  40. Jen Hepp says:

    Chemtrails have been going on for a very long time there is documentary evidence that chemtrails were being done in the 1950s. If this site purely wishes to debunk them fine but there is evidence to say the MOD and porton Down have been involved with chemtrail experiments in the UK.

    There is a video of a man connected to these experiments in America who used them during the vietnam war I will find you the video. Videos also about British experiments.

  41. Jen Hepp says:

    This is a great video on Ben livingston who was involved in weather modification during the vietnam war.

  42. Jen Hepp says:

    look ben livingston up on you tube as it wont let me post the link

  43. Jay Reynolds says:

    Unfortunately, Jen, you are under the mistaken impression that the contrails you see are caused by weather modification. Someone has told you this, and you have believed them. You are wrong because whomever told you this either did not know what they were talikng about, or deliberately lied to you.

    Weather modification can only take place where weather exists. Weather doesn’t really exist as high up in the sky as the plane sare which leave the contrails you see. Tens of thousands of ordinary jet pilots fly the exact same skies and make the exact same contrails you have been led to believe are weather modification.

    Find an actual flying jet pilot and ask him/her. They will tell you they make contrails, they will tell you they see other planes making them too. They are made of water. They are harmless. Do what I say and you will find what you have not been told elsewhere.

  44. Terry says:

    I have seen jet planes since the first passenger jets flew.

    I saw contrails in the brilliant blue skies, the original ones.

    Here in Victoria we get nice clear mornings with a blue sky, late afternoon
    giant planes show up (have watched many of them through binoculars) most often they suddenly leave long
    (CONTRAILS) behind, then 4 or 5 more large aircraft show up leaving long (CONTRAILS)?

    That’s seems to be a odd airline schedule and direction?????????????
    AND ONLY IN THE AFTERNOON on sunny days??????

    You live here to, don’t you care what’s going on up there???

    Have all stations been told they are not allowed to talk about what’s
    going on in our air WE BREATH?

    I am astounded we aren’t one hell of a lot more concerned..AREN’T YOU?



    then our evening sky turns hazy and you can see the contrails spead out across the sky until we end with a hazy evening.

    I have been watching contrails since I was a kid, you need to come visit, sit on our water
    front on a sunny day and watch the (contrails).

    Does money grubbing change an honest person into a liar, cheat and all the rest of the BS.make a lier out of many many people.

  45. Jay Reynolds says:

    Terry, I suggest that when you see these planes amking contrails, you go to the flightaware.con website here:
    On the map panel,click the lower right arrows pointing outwards to make the map full screen.
    Then in the upper left corner, click the (-) minus sign once to zoom outwards a bit.
    This should give you a view of all flights for several hundred miles around.
    You may not be aware that your area is under a heavily traveled route to/from Asia. Many flights will be passing overhead which this tool will eventually help you identify as ordinary commercial flights, once you develop some skills. Be aware that planes close to the horizon can actually be 100 miles away,
    and most flights leaving contrails will be at high altitudes passing over your area, not landing there but headed far away.

    This might also help you understand:

    Try this and get back to us on your findings. I once helped a Terry from victoria do this.

  46. cloudspotter says:

    Maybe the planes just look giant through your binoculars. What magnification are they?

  47. Jim in metro Boston says:


    This helps explain haze. Long read but informative.

    Haze is man made, but it don’t come from jets.

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