Thursday, June 28, 2007

Angry clouds above GM Falls

Out There friend Zen sent this photo last night (didn't see it till now, my Internet connect was down), taken as he was driving west on Hwy 24 around Green Mountain Falls. (Seems he and Dave were passing each other on the highway.)

Zen is a trained weather spotter. He says the cloud formation above the yellow & black arrow looked "awfully suspicious," but "could have just been what they call "scud" - but there seemed to be a lot of rotation too."
There was still a lot of hail in my yard when I got home to Manitou about 7:45. Until last night I thought I could get by another year before painting the house. Now, I'm not so sure! The garden looks beat up, but it'll survive.
On another note: Do you see the orangutan in the clouds?


Dave Philipps said...

I saw clear rotation in three spots in Teller, including right over 24 at Green Mountain Falls at 4:30 last night.

zen said...

Funnel clouds can be difficult to identify. People often mistake scud for funnel clouds (the Golden Bell pic shows a lot of scud - fragments of broken cloud hanging below or off the base of the storm).

People also mistake virga (rain that falls but doesn't hit the ground) and rainbands for tornados or funnel clouds in the distance.

And localized downdrafts can create interesting fomations as well.

What I photographed was conical, but also quite ragged around the cone, and not very enlongated at the time. As I approaced Woodland Park I could also see the rotation Dave talks about though.

As a storm chaser I've been under that kind of rotation on the Eastern Plains more than once. It is eerily fascination and beautiful. That is until it drops on your home.

Still I wasn't entirely sure until I got home and confirmed with the National Weather Service. You just don't see that kind of storm in the mountains!

It was awesome. Check out all the pics News 13 has on their site too. - check out the Stormtracker13 page.