Cauliflower Cloud

Wild West Yorkshire nature diary, Sunday 28th February 1999

moon, rainbowTODAY, HIGH WINDS AND HEAVY SHOWERS meant the wildlife was lying low. Yesterday we watched a front arrive from the west and stop in its tracks. First, shower clouds moved east. The moon was framed by a pale rainbow.

shower cloudA cloud the shape of a cauliflower had developed a knife edge. Heavy showers and high winds had carved it into a shape that echoes the sandblasted stones of Brimham Rocks.

frontA massive wall of cloud had piled up over the Pennines. The jet stream dragged out its top into a streamer, as if water flung from a bucket had been frozen in mid-air by high speed photography.

nebulaA short glance at the night sky with a pair of 8x40 binoculars brings out the mares of the Moon. The Orion nebula, not visible to the naked eye on this moonlit night, showed up plainly. Stars such as the blood-red Betelgeuse become more than just points of lights. You can see the colour so much better.

Richard Bell,
wildlife illustrator


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