Can someone explain this cloud formation???

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by BourbonCowboy, Jul 29, 2007.

  1. This evening I was patrolling one of our parks (in the absolute middle of nowhere). I got out of the truck for a smoke and looked up. I noticed this weird cloud formation. It looked as if the clouds parted in a straight line - and the part went from where you see below, over my head, and out of sight behind me. I was wondering if anyone knows how this I know very little about this kind of stuff. It reminded me of a reverse rainbow.

  2. cotdt


    Jul 14, 2007
    Bay Area, USA
    i think it is a supernatureal occurance
  3. snownow


    Jul 13, 2006
    so cal
    Freaky, great shot, but freaky

  4. really freaked me out, too. I got our park attendants and a couple visiting rangers out to see it. They all wanted me to email them the shot for their desktops.
  5. rsprouse


    Jan 25, 2006
    Encinitas CA
    I think it is actually a shadow. It looks as if there was a fire off in the distance that was generating a column of smoke, which caused the setting sun to paint the dark stripe on the underside of the cloud layer.

    -- Russ
  6. Gale


    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Fantastic shot
    Almost looks like a tornado
  7. chrisnck


    Jul 19, 2007
    Wow looks scary .
  8. Hi Mark,

    It looks like a cloud shadow. You might want to check out this website that discusses almost everything strange you can see in the sky:
    Atmospheric Optics

    A. O. Ray and shadow page

    You might want to think about submitting your photo as an example, I think yours is better than the one they are using.

  9. Rob


    Jul 28, 2005
    Truro, Cornwall, UK
    You can get a much smaller but similar effect from contrail shadows, especially if the aircraft is just above a layer of ice crystals.:wink:
    Question, did you guys find the source of the fire? :biggrin::biggrin:
  10. richinnj

    richinnj Guest

  11. GoGo


    Apr 20, 2006
    New York

    Is it a tornado?

  12. SHHHHHHHHH!!!!!! We don't say the "T" word here anymore.:biggrin:

    It certainly looks like one though. But I'm thinking that Bob was right: it seems to be a cloud shadow. I learn something new here every day.