Condensation Eddy Cloud

July 31, 2012


: Robert Leffler
Summary Author: Robert Leffler

The photo above shows a small condensation eddy, almost forming a weak funnel cloud, just downwind from the summit of Mount Porte Crayon (4,770 ft or 1,450 m). Condensation plumes such as these are often observed in thunderstorms above the several north-facing bowls just downwind from the summit ridge. Cloud rotation is usually quite weak. I suspect these eddies form in the bowls as saturated air lifted over the summit begins to descend. They’re somewhat analogous to the little pools of rotating water that form behind boulders (downstream) in a creek. Photo taken just south of Canaan Valley, in the north-central Allegheny Mountains of West Virginia on July 20, 2012.

Photo details: Camera Maker: FUJIFILM; Camera Model: FinePix2650; Focal Length: 18.0mm; Aperture: f/3.5; Exposure Time: 0.014 s (1/70); ISO equiv: 100; Exposure Bias: none; Metering Mode: Matrix; Exposure: program (Auto); White Balance: Auto; Flash Fired: No (enforced); Orientation: Normal; Color Space: sRGB.