Thursday, October 8, 2009

Skywatch: Mackerel Sky

Amazing sky late this afternoon - ranks upon ranks of pearly, striated altocumulus clouds. A sky like this is known sometimes as a mackerel sky, apparently resembling the scales on the fish of that name. I have no personal acquaintance with the mackerel, so I will take that on faith.

From the quick reading I've done I believe this type of cloud formation often signals the imminent arrival of a cold front, and indeed it is supposed to get cold tonight and over the next few days, with frost and freeze warnings out for much if not all of Minnesota.

Click on any of these photos to "step into the scene" with a much larger photo.

And if you like skies, you can visit skies around the world at Skywatch Friday.

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15 comments:

John said...

Lovely clouds! I especially like the second photo.

J Bar said...

I love scattered clouds.
Sydney - City and Suburbs

chrome3d said...

Fine mackarel sky and you made the most of it. Really lovely set. I never get tired of those clouds. The 3rd pic was my fave with that lamp post.

Squirrel said...

I love the last shot the best. It has a shattery look to it. Very dynamic.

Gaelyn said...

Holy mackeral, those are some interesting looking skies. Like the street lamp.

magiceye said...

fabulous

luna miranda said...

pretty amazing clouds! love the composition of these photos.

Penelope said...

Christopher Tassava also has a couple of wonderful photos of last night's sky at his blog Blowing and Drifting.

Christopher Tassava said...

Beautiful, Penny! I am happy to read a little more about the kind of clouds these were. There were certainly distinctive, even in a place where unbelievable clouds are pretty common. (Thanks for linking my post, too.)

Lynne at Hasty Brook said...

Gorgeous photos!!
Love the last one.

Greg Dimitriadis said...

Wonderful clouds. You'd think they were knitted together!

Jim H. said...

Fascinating pictures. I, too, favor the streetlight one.

You sure those aren't pickerel clouds?

Perhaps all cloud formations should have food or animal nicknames. What would a macaroon cloud look like? Or macaroni clouds? Macadamia?

Penelope said...

Something about these clouds reminds me of the shots in Star Wars where an enormous starship passes directly over the viewer. There's that sense of direction and movement and closeness and immensity.

Thanks for all the visits and comments!

Kirk Mona said...

I've certainly noticed the clouds have become more winter like recently. Maybe even snow by this weekend it sounds like!

dAwN said...

Wow!!!!!1 Beautiful shots! Just catching up with you and your blog...Yikes do i see snow up there in those posts above??? going to check it out now..putting on my mittens right now...