I say this all the time:  look up, you never know what you’ll see! Yesterday, David Blythe noticed this intriguing cloud formation while driving in Cape Breton.

This cool cloud is a midlevel altocumulus cloud that often appears in rows.  Depending on the conditions of the air, you may or may not see blue between the rows.  I’m just back from Cuba, so to me, these clouds look like ripples in the sand. 

Grandma never went south (outside of South Glengarry) so these clouds reminded her of something she saw everyday growing up – a washboard. Many people know these clouds as Washboard clouds.  They are not that common, but appear more often over the ocean than over land. 

In most cases, they form when colder air falls along the edges of the midlevel convection, pulling down to form unstable rolling eddies.

Mariners knew that the appearance of these clouds meant deteriorating weather conditions: high winds and precipitation was coming!  They were right.  I’m watching a slow moving rainmaker currently off the Carolina coast.  It's expected to push moisture into our region tomorrow and Thursday.

I’ll tell you how much rain is coming and look ahead to the all important weekend, tonight on CTV News.


Chief Meteorologist