Lenticular Clouds

It’s a common occurrence in the Alps for a cloudless sky in the morning to be replaced by a slow build-up of Cumulus clouds over the mountains as the day progresses. Sometimes those cloud formations can be extraordinary, bizarre and dramatic, and often short-lived.

From Left: Alphubel, Taschhorn, Dom, Lenzspitze, Nadelhorn

Lenticular clouds (Altocumulus Lenticularis) are a classic example of clouds that can develop over the tops of high mountains. There’s a useful article on Wikipedia about them, click here to open it.

From Left: Alphubel, Taschhorn, Dom

I was descending back down from Almagelleralp into the Saas valley in the Valais Alps when these clouds started to form over the Mischabel mountains. It’s the type of display that stops you in your tracks to reach for the camera and capture the sight evolving in front of your eyes.

Taschhorn and Dom

These three images span 10 minutes. Colour is almost a distraction, and personally I prefer the pure simplicity of the Black and White conversions. What do you think?

Click any image to view an enlargement

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About LensScaper

Hi - I'm a UK-based photographer who started out 45+ years ago as a lover of landscapes, inspired by my love of outdoor pursuits: skiing, walking and climbing. Now retired, I seldom leave home without a camera and I find images in unexpected places and from different genres. I work on the premise that Photography is Art and that creativity is dependent on the cultivation of 'A Seeing Eye'. I'm not averse to manipulating images to produce derivatives that may sometimes be far removed from the original.
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17 Responses to Lenticular Clouds

  1. Len says:

    Not only super images but a lesson on clouds. Very nice post Andy.

  2. ken bello says:

    The black and white give the photos more dram in my opinion. They’re great photos, they need the best treatment.

    • LensScaper says:

      Many thanks Ken. B&W is a very forgiving medium at times (unlike colour) and certainly can instil a sense of drama that is greater than can be achieved in colour

  3. ehpem says:

    What great clouds! And shots. I especially like that cloud in the form of a jellyfish in the first picture. The things one can find in the sky, it’s truly amazing.

  4. I agree the B&W conversion works best. The clouds you’ve captured in the second image are incredible. Love these Andy.

  5. I’m a colour fan Andy – I love the subtle hues in the blue of the sky, with the drama of the white cloud (with a splash of grey) overlaying the blue – lovely!

    Ah well, t’would be a dull old world if we all liked the same things 🙂

    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks Paul. ‘Each to his own’ as they say! I think I am still influenced by starting out as a B&W printer for about 15years. I’ve never stopped loving that medium.

  6. These are wonderful images, Andy. I usually go for the color versions of most shots but the B&W really works well here. Interesting piece on Lenticular clouds, which I had never heard of before. 🙂 Nice read and lesson.

    Thanks for sharing, Andy!

  7. rigmover says:

    Very very nice, B&W look so good, thanks Andy.

  8. seekraz says:

    Had never seen them until moving to the mountainous area of Salt Lake…and have now seen them several times…fascinating. I do enjoy the natural blue tint with green in the first photo, simply for the natural context, but the black and white provides the needed definition when isolating the focus on the clouds…beautiful photos, Andy.

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