Surf's up? Massive 'wave' cloud spotted near Boeing plant

Photo of Kelvin-Helmholtz cloud over Everett on April 2, 2015. (Photo: Chuck Benson)

Chuck Benson snapped these rather strange looking clouds outside the Boeing Everett 87 building Thursday morning.

It looks like the surf's up in the sky, and in a way it is. These are called "Kelvin-Helmholtz" clouds, caused when you have wind shear --that is, layers of air moving in different speeds or directions. As those layers interact with clouds, you can get turbulence that causes these impressive wave-like formations to occur.

This animation will show how the clouds form.

Aside from looking cool, they're a warning to pilots to avoid that area as they are accompanied by strong turbulence.

Here is another dramatic example shot a few years ago in Alabama:

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