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Cumulonimbus capillatus: Before the storm

March 22nd, 2012 · No Comments · weather

Beautiful clouds in Nashville, Tennessee

birds flying under cumulonimbus capillatus clouds: Nashville, Mar 14, 2012, Stephen Frasier Photography 2012This amateur cloud spotter recently noticed a unique, beautiful cloud with the appearance of a great big splash of water, as though a huge log had been tossed into a lake. The stringy, thin nature of this cloud led me to misidentify it as some type of cirrus cloud. In retrospect, that was an unwise choice; cirrus clouds are far higher than the cumulonimbus cloud to which this interesting splash of a cloud was connected.

cumulonimbus capillatus clouds: Nashville, Mar 14, 2012, Stephen Frasier Photography 2012What I initially and mistakenly believed to be cirrus clouds turned out to be an incredible splash of cumulonimbus capillatus clouds. Without The Cloudspotter’s Guide — one of my favorite weather-related books – I would not have correctly classified the big white splash painted on the blue sky.

This amazing cumulonimbus capillatus marked the western edge of a severe thunderstorm: a supercell which drove south Nashville residents into their basements and storm cellars. Having one of the few basements in our neighborhood, we had a small crowd for this exciting severe weather event. Love those storms…

NOTE: Dozens of additional photographs in this series (shot at the same time) can be seen on the recent post, Incredible capillatus clouds mark the edge of a thunderstorm

Resources: Cumulonimbus capillatus clouds

This post was written on Thursday, March 22, 2012.

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