by Randy Wildman
(North Gower)



Took this picture over the top of the Local Home Depot store in Barrhaven (part of Ottawa). This cloud was turning on its side and growing outwards as it rolled.

Barry's Response - These different types of clouds appear to be tumultuous, Randy.

Did this system produce a tornado? There's a greenish background, so it might have been possible.

Since it's so close-up, it's hard to tell if it's a shelf cloud, which extends from the front of a thunderstorm. You might have found one in its infancy, as shelf clouds usually have a more distinct shape.

It looks like a solid triangularish or squarish extension of the storm when it's fully formed. Especially on the bottom face, the surface texture looks rough and turbulent. When this part of the storm hits, there can be cool gusty winds, the gust front, that kick up dust and debris.

When it's not raining, the storm has a similar feature. It's called a wall cloud. Tornadoes can also be spotted by rotating wall clouds. You'll probably see them when a big storm is north or northeast of you (in North America). Was there a tail on this one?

Thanks for the photo. Let's marvel at the intricacies of this weather system, appreciate its splendor, and be vigilant, for nature's beauty and power walk hand-in-hand. In understanding and respecting the elements, we find harmony with the forces that shape our world. So cherish the grandeur and be aware of potential dangers...

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Behold the awe-inspiring beauty and majesty of nature's weather symphony, a captivating dance of clouds that graces the sky with its presence.

What a beautiful cloud! As it rolls across the horizon, it turns on its side, growing outwards.

This swirling canvas holds the potential for tremendous power and destruction, but it also comes with a delicate balance, a blend of beauty and danger. What if this system produced a tornado, that mighty force of nature that humbles us? The greenish backdrop adds an air of mystery, hinting at its ferocity.

Come on, my fellow citizens, let's delve deeper into this celestial masterpiece. Are we looking at a shelf cloud emerging from a thunderstorm, beckoning us to explore its secrets? The shape might not be distinct in its infancy, but when it's fully formed, it stands tall, like a solid triangle or squarish extension of the storm.

It looks rough and turbulent, a testament to its strength and vigor. During this part of the storm, cool gusty winds, called gust fronts, kick up dust and debris, reminding us of nature's power.

When the rain stops, a new feature emerges - the wall cloud. That's a fascinating sight, but one that requires caution, since tornadoes may accompany it. My friends, pay attention when a storm looms north or northeast of you, especially in our North American land.

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Thank you to my research and writing assistants, ChatGPT and WordTune, as well as Wombo and others for the images.

GPT-4, OpenAI's large-scale language generation model (and others provided by Google and Meta), helped generate this text.  As soon as draft language is generated, the author reviews, edits, and revises it to their own liking and is responsible for the content.