View Full Version : Name these clouds please...

Arthur Morris
02-19-2008, 08:58 PM
Just saw some clouds on the way to the beach at Fort DeSoto about two weeks back...

Canon 70-200mm f/4 L IS lens handheld at 93mm with the EOS-1D MIII. ISO 400. Evaluative Metering +1 1/3 stops: 1/200 sec. at f/10.

I will sorta be surprised if Corbis does not grab this one as I believe it might do well as a stock image...

Don't be shy. All comments welcome. and later and love, artie

gary rouleau
02-19-2008, 09:29 PM
Artie they look a lot like mammatus clouds to me. According to my book they indicate a very moist and unstable middle and upper levels in the atmosphere, overlying a drier layer below an anvil produced by an adjacent cumulonimbus cloud.

Judd Patterson
02-20-2008, 01:52 AM
Yes, those are mammatus clouds. They can often be even more distinct and shadowed. I can recall some very eerie mammatus accompanying large supercell on the plains. These from Nebraska (not my photographs unfortunately) are spectacular and worth sharing: http://www.hprcc.unl.edu/nebraska/june2004hastings-mammatus.html

The colors here are quite nice and the cloud patterns would make a fine background image for a variety of projects.

Ian McHenry
02-20-2008, 02:00 AM
Hi Artie. Confirmed as Mammatus version of Altocumulus clouds.
Indication of very unstable air.
Best views don't last long so worth staying outside for a short time.
Ian Mc

Arthur Morris
02-20-2008, 04:16 AM
Thanks to all for the cloud ID, and to Judd for the spectacular link.

and later and love, artie

Alfred Forns
02-20-2008, 10:01 AM
Thanks Gary ........ never herd of a mammatus cloud before much less seen one !!!!!!!! Artie did you have a clue what you were photographing :)

I'm sure they will do well It is an image that stands well on its own .... Judd thanks for the link !!!!

Robert Amoruso
02-20-2008, 02:16 PM
I have seen this in TX and a few other mid-west states as a precursor to a tornado.

Great image and the colors look just like one I saw many years ago.

Jim Poor
02-20-2008, 07:14 PM
Holy crap! Wonderful golden clouds. Who needs a silver lining.

Mike Tracy
02-20-2008, 07:26 PM
I think the names origins lies in that the ones that are more pronounced and developed look like mammary's.

Jim Poor
02-20-2008, 07:32 PM
You are correct Mike:

From Wiki

(also known as mamma or mammatocumulus, meaning "breast-cloud") is a meteorological (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meteorology) term applied to a cellular pattern of pouches hanging underneath the base of a cloud (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cloud). The name "mammatus" is derived from the Latin mamma (breast), due to the resemblance . . .

Richard Kowalski
02-22-2008, 11:01 PM
I used to see them several times a year during my 18 years living in and around Tampa, but I worked outside, so it was understandable I'd be able to see them during their fleeting appearances. One other thing that sort of can be seen in the fourth image down on the page Judd cited is the greenish tint. That is probably real, not poor color balance. If you see "Mats" and they have a green tint, take shelter and expect hail, outflow gust walls and possibly tornados.