Thursday, June 05, 2014

Mammatus Mania

In all my years as a "Weather Geek", I have never seen mammatus clouds like the ones over central Arkansas this Thursday.  I have only seen pictures of them over the plains wondering if someone photoshopped the image.  Today's display by mother nature was nothing short of incredible!

What is a mammatus cloud?  Here's the Cliff Note version.  First of all, they are harmless.  They typically form in the wake of big storms like today.   For a cloud to form, you need air to rise.  This is what helps in the development of a big thunderstorm.  As that air rises and spreads out away from the thunderstorms (those were in NE Arkansas today), it carries ice crystals away from the storm and at some point, they begin to sink back towards the surface.  The result are these incredible looking clouds.

Below are KATV viewer pictures.

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