Estonian Funnel Cloud
January 12, 2008
The photo above shows a funnel cloud forming above Kuressaare, the main city on the island of Saaremaa in the eastern European nation of Estonia. Severe storms resulting in tornadic activity are rare in Europe. Funnel clouds consist of condensed water droplets and dust and are associated with a rotating column of air, which extends from the base of a cloud but doesn't reach the surface. Once the cloud touches down on the ground, it's referred to as a tornado. Note that the national flags (at bottom) are blowing toward the funnel cloud -- in the direction of the lowest pressure. Photo taken on August 4, 2007.