What Makes Air Unstable?

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By By Steve Pool

SEATTLE - Don't you love those days where it'll be sunny for 20 minutes, then you scramble for your umbrella as it pours?

Usually in the days following a good-sized storm, we get a rush of colder air moving into the upper levels of the atmosphere. That makes it easier for clouds and storms to form because when pockets of warm air rise from the ground, it'll keep rising farther since it will stay warmer longer relative to the surrounding cold air.

If the air is really unstable (read: really cold air moving in), it can create storm cells with heavy rain with frequent lightning and/or hail. These storms tend to form in the afternoon and evening after the sunshine has had a chance to warm the ground and get the process started.

Your Photos

YouNews Changes on the way Changes on the way
The cloud bands around Mt. Rainier are a sure sign of changing weather conditions. These images of Mt. Rainier were taken Thursday evening around 7:30pm with a Nikon D3000
and a 200mm telephoto lens. The dark spots on the 1st image is flock of birds (not dirt on the lens).
YouNews Wednesday morning sunrise Wednesday morning sunrise
Grabbed a few images of Mt. Rainier between 6:30am and 7:30am
before the smoke from the fires rolled back in.
YouNews Bremerton Ghost Bremerton Ghost
While conducting a basic ghost hunt on the USS Turner Joy, we captured what appears to be a face floating in the air.