Mount Baker and Cloud

October 24, 2003


Provided and copyright by: Wade Clark, Jr.
Summary authors & editors: Jim Foster; Wade Clark, Jr.

The above photo shows Mount Baker cloaked in a cap cloud. It was taken near sunset on September 22, 2003. Mount Baker (10,778 feet or 3,285 m) is one of the most prominent volcanic peaks in the Cascade Range of Washington State. However, it hasn't erupted for more than 100 years. As is the case for all types of clouds, in order for cap clouds to form, condensation must exceed evaporation. These mountaintop clouds are formed when humid air is forced upward over a mountain slope. As the air sufficiently cools, the water vapor contained in the air condenses into clouds, which sometimes cap the summit. Cap clouds are also known as pileus clouds.

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