In Britain the changing seasons, by which I mean spring and autumn, are the better ones for cloud spotting. The reason is because there’s more activity happening.
Read our chat with The Cloud Appreciation Society's founder Gavin Pretor-Pinney, learn to identify 12 cloud types with our spotter's guide and read a fascinating short fact-based guide about clouds in the October issue of Wiltshire Life.
Why is September good for cloud spotting?
In Britain the changing seasons, by which I mean spring and autumn, are the better ones for cloud spotting. The reason is because there’s more activity happening. In the spring we’re used to April showers and that means there’s a lot of clouds building up, including convection clouds; in September, you often get clearer, lower parts of the atmosphere, so you don’t have low cloud obscuring the clouds above. That means you tend to get more of a broad vista of the sky because you’re looking up at mid-level clouds and high clouds. The sense of the scale of the sky appears more dramatic.
This cloud will earn you the highest number of points of any cloud. It looks like waves breaking on a shore and appears at all three cloud levels. When cloud develops at an abrupt boundary between layers of colder air below and warmer above, the upper layer is moving more rapidly and undulations can develop along its surface. If there’s enough wind shear, these can roll up into a succession of vortices.