Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Mammatus Clouds at Sunset

My favorite type o' clouds... at my favorite time o' day:

Mammatus clouds are fairly rare... they're also associated with severe weather.  Both images were taken with my SLR with the 50mm lens mounted, rather than the grab-shot camera.  The first pic was taken in full-auto mode, the second in shutter-priority mode at f1.4 and 1/320th of a second.  The second shot is much closer to the true color of the sky.


  1. Wow that second pic is really something. I almost expect Hawkmen to come flying out while Queen sing.
    Flash! Ah ahhhh ah!....

  2. Thanks, Anon. The neighbor and I stood outside with our cameras for the better part of a half hour last evening... shooting away. Mammatus clouds are very ephemeral things... they form quickly and disappear just as fast. The sky was VERY active last evening and put on quite the show.

  3. Wow. It's like being underneath a quilt of some sort. Are they really as low as they appear in the shots, Buck?

    (I guess I need to give an estimate of height for you to truly answer that question, so let's go with 6,000 feet.)

  4. I'm not too good on estimating cloud deck height, but five or six thousand feet sounds about right.

  5. I first saw those on a business trip to Topeka, KS back in the 80s (we just don't get many of them here in New England).

    Scared the crap outta me! Seriously thought the world was ending it was so foreign to me - and it wasn't a nice color it was dark, angry black.

    And yup, followed by one of the worst thunderstorms I've ever experienced.

    Great pics Buck - just glad that's all they are for me, pictures...

  6. Severe weather was the reason the neighbors and I were standin' around outside last night, Kris. We had some pretty powerful storms all around us last evening and they bore watching... so we did. And then these clouds came along and we all ran indoors to fetch our cameras. They're just AMAZING in real-life.

  7. Wow, amazing shots! But I'll bet your neighbor probably doesn't have the same kind of audience as you for his pics.

  8. Unless he has a Facebook page and a couple hundred "friends." Heh.


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