Weather Blog

Weekend eye candy: Cool clouds and a very visual flight

Weekend eye candy: Cool clouds and a very visual flight

With the weather activity slowing down a bit, this weekend is giving me a chance to catch up on some tidbits I've been waiting to post.

First up, take a peek at these incredible storm clouds (photo above) that were taken by Michelle Crosslin in Puyallup Wednesday evening. These are somewhat rare mammatus clouds that typically portend stormy weather. Indeed, this was the side shot of a thunderstorm that moved through the South Sound area that night.

Those clouds are more typical in the stormy Midwest, but Seattle has seen them recently when a big storm blew over on March 2.

How about a flashback to winter? This photo was taken on Jan. 24 by NASA's MODIS satellite.

Here is how they describe it: "What do you get when you mix below-freezing air temperatures, frigid northwest winds from Canada, and ocean temperatures hovering around 39 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit (4 to 5 degrees Celsius)? Paved highways of clouds across the skies of the North Atlantic." These clouds are caused when the cold, dry wind blows across the warmer, moist ocean and creates their own cloud streaks - or "streets" in this case.

Closer to home, but still on a winter theme, this photo was sent in by a boasting Crystal Mountain resort, where the calendar says April, but the slopes say February.

The ski resort says they've received 10" of snow this week and 4 feet since the start of April. They say they'll be running spring skiing on limited dates through -- get this -- June 12! So far, the season has received 528" of snow -- over 150" above their normal average.

Heading back to space, I found these photos also from NASA, but taken from the International Space Station of two storms that were spinning around in the Pacific Ocean on March 20. The big storm that went into California would drop several inches of rain and prompted this blog article about how Los Angeles was trying to be wetter than Seattle.

These first three photos are from the ISS, the fourth is from the weather satellite.

(I zoomed on the above photo here to illustrate when you have those cold, unstable clouds out there -- look how tall they are!):

Finally, if you've made it this far, you get treated to a great video that was Tweeted to me of a savvy photographer who filmed his entire flight from San Francisco to Paris, and chopped it down to two minutes of amazing time lapse video, including a display of the Northern Lights:

Have a great weekend!