|
|
|
MailTribune.com
  • SINCE YOU ASKED

    Since You Asked: Fire cloud was awesome sight

    • email print
      Comment
  • When the Oregon Gulch fire blew up near Ashland, there was an awe-inspiring cloud that formed in the area of the fire.
    It looked like a thundercloud, but it was boiling up like smoke. There was plenty of dark smoke, but that cloud was too white to be all smoke. What were we seeing?
    — Joyce, Medford
    The dramatic, cauliflower-shaped cloud you spotted was a pyrocumulus cloud, also known as a “fire cloud.”
    Marc Spilde, Medford weather service meteorologist, said pyrocumulus clouds form from the intense heat generated by the fire.
    “It basically forms into a towering cumulus,” Spilde said. “But the very hot surfaces and the cooler air aloft create a lot of instability.”
    The pyrocumulus cloud you spotted in the Oregon Gulch fire was large enough to loft a large amount of smoke into the atmosphere and cause several lightening strikes.
    Send questions to “Since You Asked,” Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501; by fax to 541-776-4376; or by email to youasked@mailtribune.com. We’re sorry, but the volume of questions received prevents us from answering all of them.
Reader Reaction

      calendar