Thick dust rose from the Sahara Desert in late June, 2012, creating a broad blanket of sand that covered much of northwestern Africa and curled in an arc over the Atlantic Ocean. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASAís Aqua satellite captured this true-color image on June 24. The dust blew off the coast of Morocco and over the Atlantic Ocean. Off the coast, the dust formed an arc that bent eastward, in the direction of the Mediterranean Sea. Immediately off the coast of Morocco, just north of the border with Western Sahara, the dust was thick enough to completely hide the water surface below. Dust also blew over the easternmost Canary Islands. Inland, dust covered Algeria (northeast), Mauritania (southwest) and Mali (southeast). Over Morocco and the Atlantic Ocean, clouds hovered over the dust, partially blocking the satellite sensorís view of the plumes. The clouds may have been associated with the same weather system that stirred the dust.