Clouds that look like ocean waves. What is it?

     Van Gogh clouds! Like breaking ocean waves. They are called Kelvin Helmholzt clouds, aka billow clouds or shear-gravity clouds    It’s widely believed that these waves in the sky inspired the swirls in Van Gogh’s masterpiece Starry Night. Here’s a special kind of cloud known to scientists as a Kelvin Helmholtz cloud. These clouds look like breaking ocean waves, with the rolling eddies … Continue reading Clouds that look like ocean waves. What is it?

Virga is rain that does not reach the ground

 The word virga is derived from Latin meaning “twig” or “branch”. We’ve all seen virga, but maybe not known what it’s called. Virga is rain that evaporates before it hits the ground. It often appears in streaks or shafts extending from the bottoms of clouds. You often see virga over a desert, where low humidity and high temperatures can cause rain to evaporate shortly after … Continue reading Virga is rain that does not reach the ground