Trisha Hawke, 44, had just dropped her nine-year-old daughter off at school when she spotted the unusual sight in the clouds over Accrington, Lancashire.
The amateur photographer enjoys taking photographs of clouds, sunsets and general scenic shots every day but could not believe her eyes on this occasion.
There is a clear shadow rising up from the skyline, with two separate clouds making what look like steps and a beam of sunlight either side.
“It looked just like a set of stairs or steps”
Mother-of-four Ms Hawke said: “I always have my camera with me and usually take pictures every morning after dropping my daughter off at school.
“The way the sun was coming through the clouds on this particular morning was really pretty and would have made a nice photo anyway but then I saw this really strange shape rising up from the skyline.
“It looked just like a set of stairs or steps so my first thought was it looked like a stairway to heaven. I was really pleased to have caught it on camera as often these things don’t show up the same as when you see them with your own eyes.
The 44-year-old mother took the picture after dropping her daughter off at school
“I’m not sure what made the shape appear like that or how long it was there for but it must have been a little while as I had enough time to get my camera out and take a picture.
“I have taken some strange pictures before as I often see unusual shapes in the sky but I have no idea what this is.
“I am a big believer in God and I do believe in heaven but I wouldn’t like to say what caused the stairway shape to appear.
“Everyone sees different things in my pictures, which is what I like most about taking pictures of the sky. So I just like to take them and let people make up their own mind.”
Ms Hawke has had some of her photographs displayed in an art exhibition, though it is not the first time she has seen unusual formations in the clouds.
Ms Hawke often takes pictures of the sky
The photographer says she shoots sunsets almost every day
Last year she spotted what looked like the face of Harry Potter’s arch-nemesis Voldemort looking down at her from dark clouds.
She said: “It is quite a spooky picture. As soon as I showed it to other people, a lot said it looked like Voldemort.
“People do find this one quite frightening. I suppose this one is a bit scary as it is so dark and creepy, but despite being on my own I wasn’t scared at the time as when I looked back up at the sky it was already changing shape.
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