Temperatures will remain high on Saturday as the west coast ridge of high pressure stays put. A few clouds will likely run into the region Saturday afternoon as a very weak low bumps up against the ridge from the southwest, but high temperatures will approach the 90 degree mark before backing off into the low 80s on Sunday and Monday. The ridge strengthens by midweek sending high temperatures back into the upper 80s.

Sierra Wave 1

We’ve been talking about how clouds form. The famous “Sierra Wave” (or flying saucer shaped) cloud is always forming cloud on the upwind side, and evaporating (disappearing) on the downwind side. Think of a standing wave that forms on a stream that flows over a rock. The wave itself seems to be “standing still.” But it is always utilizing “new water,” that only stays in the wave itself for a very brief time. To the eye on the ground, a Sierra Wave cloud seems to be motionless. But each water droplet inside is generally zipping through the cloud at over 35 miles per hour.

So in a nutshell, it’s not the water that is “sticking together”, but rather the physical processes of cloud formation that is contained in a definable volume.

Of course, it’s always fun when those physical processes end up looking like a UFO.

 

 

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