Thursday, October 8, 2009

Lenticular Cloud


I had seen something like that odd cloud in my Petersons First Guide for Clouds and Weather, so I knew is was special. My camera was packed in my take on luggage so I quickly took it out and began snapping photos before we flew too far away. I was high above Arizona, flying to California last fall, as I marveled at the strange cloud just off the wing of my plane.

Once home I was able to Google “lens-shaped white space ship cloud” and found it was called a Lenticular cloud. They don’t float away like most clouds but remain stationary over mountain ranges or large mountains, even though they are formed by strong winds forced over the mountains. They do disappear or rather evaporate when the moist air that created them moves back down.

It looked like a space ship checking out my airplane and I was thankful that a gremlin didn’t hop out onto the wing and begin tearing it apart. Just seeing it was enough of a Twilight Zone experience for me.


Visit more Sky Watch Friday posts.

31 comments:

Marie Höglund said...

Wow I have never seen that kind of formation before. Love it!

Elisabeth said...

How unusual...Thank you for the information. Have never heard of this before.

Bemused26 said...

those are great pictures of that type of cloud- funny enough I was just on another blog where someone had posted about lenticular clouds. Great post! Will be back soon :)

Gaelyn said...

Love to see the lenticular clouds hanging out over mountain tops. Great capture.

eileeninmd said...

Wonderful photos, i going to have pay more attention to the shapes of the clouds.

Light and Voices said...

I have never heard of lenticular clouds. Fantastic sky shot!
Joyce M

Lene said...

I just love this. It is such a beautiful phenomenon. Great perspecive :)

Have a great day. Sooon it is weekend :) Enjyo :)

AL said...

Wonderful photo of the lenticular cloud. I haven't heard of that name of cloud before and thank you for sharing that. I love watching clouds especially when they form into different sizes and shapes. Thanks for the visit.

Lew said...

Must be a special on Lenticular clouds this week. Yours is the third I have seen. Nice work, getting the cloud from above. And you were out there in the land of the UFO's.

Lorac said...

Very cool! I wouldn't have known about that formation to look it up. I am glad you did. Learned something new.Thanks!

Steve B said...

Nice! We get a few lenticular clouds here in Massachusetts. I saw them quite regularly along the Front Range of the Rockies in Colorado.

diane said...

Well you learn something new every day in blogland. I never knew these clouds had a special name. Good shots and information.

Tabib said...

Spectacular clouds pictures.
Ha.ha.. gremlin in spaceship.

~Cheryl said...

Wow! Somewhere I have a photo of Mt. Rainier "wearing a hat" so am wondering if it was a Lenticular Hat. Hmmm.

Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving comments....not only do we share a name, we share our age! Are we cool or what? :)

Carletta said...

As soon as I saw it I thought spaceship. :)
Lovely image!
Thanks for the name of the spaceship.
It's been a long while since I was in a plane. I've forgotten what being way up there looks like.

chrome3d said...

Those are the kinda clouds you just have to capture! I remembered too that they were stationary for a long time which meant that they were easy subjects to photograph.

Carolyn Ford said...

Looking down at fabulous clouds is an awesome opportunity for a photo! These are amazing!

Tammie Lee said...

these are lovely clouds!
Spirithelpers

Small City Scenes said...

Pretty neat, huh. I have taken a few of those Lenticular clouds hanging over Mt. Rainier out here. I really like clouds so seeing something new is pretty neat. MB

Kcalpesh said...

Beautiful view! I should try that the next time I board a plane! Nicely done!

- Pixellicious Photos

Grace Olsson said...

Squirrel Dear.
Many years ago I was thinking to do that...look it to clouds...into a small airplaine...but now..not more..
I learned to see the most beautiful sky at SKYWATCH.
Congrats and have a nice weekend, dear
http://graceolsson.com/blog/2009/10/wedding-in-sherbourne-castleuk-at-skywatchfriday/

Arija said...

Well spotted and nice shot too.

Naturegirl said...

Very interesting clouds. I always have my camera in my carry on just so I can cloud watch and snap while flying in a plane..passes the time too.Interesting facts too!
Thanks for sharing!

imom said...

Gorgeous shots! I see those clouds frequently over Mount Rainier in WA state and just love them.

Daryl said...

Awesome .. especially since you snapped through an airplane window, said windows are not noted for clearness or transparency!

And thank you for your visit and extremely nice/kind comment!

Lindy MacDuff said...

Saw those types of clouds earlier this summer when I was back out in Arizona. I do not remember ever seeing them previously. And, yes, they were near mountains, just as your reference cites. Thanks for the information!

Thanks, too, for visiting my blog and leaving your kind comment.
:D

SD at "Addicted to The Click" said...

Thanks for visiting and the comment! Beautiful image!

Stine in Ontario said...

Photos like this make me wonder if most UFOs are sighted in mountainous areas. Very intereting post.

SquirrelQueen said...

Great photos and excellent information, I have never seen that formation before. My hubby on the other hand is a private pilot and has seen these, he liked your photo.

I'm also glad to hear I'm not the only one who remembers that episode of the Twilight Zone.

ascu75 aka Don said...

Looks like a big fluffy pillow and I am goig to find it and have a sleep on it XXX Don

FA said...

It's inevitable that I forget to have my camera handy when I fly. I'm glad that you had yours, though, because these are great shots. I remember that Twilight Zone episode! It was scary. I always thought that the teletubbies resembled that Gremlin. Thanks for visiting Monastery Daily Photo.