Lenticular clouds (Altocumulus lenticularis) are stationary lens-shaped clouds that form at high altitudes, normally aligned perpendicular to the wind direction. Lenticular clouds can be separated into altocumulus standing lenticularis (ACSL), stratocumulus standing lenticular (SCSL), and cirrocumulus standing lenticular (CCSL). Due to their shape, they are often mistaken for Unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs). Per Wiki
My pilot father was known to say that Lenticular's heralded a change in the weather. They often position themselves between wet and dry fronts. And here in the mountains of New Mexico we see them, this time of year, as a sign of the unset of the monsoon season. So yesterday when heading out to feed my friend's dogs I grabbed the camera. From her house you can see further south and I had hopes of possibly seeing the build up of a storm clouds.
I took several pictures of this cloud thinking it might herald a few drops of rain and then noticed the strange color. It was a cloud of smoke and not a cloud of rain. The news confirmed there is another fire south of us and just north of Santa Fe. This one worries me. It could head my direction and there is mostly just forest in between. But it is still a long way off.
But perhaps the dry forest right around me is of more concern. Dry winds continue. And the tourists are here with ATV's (blamed for beginning the Track Fire near Raton) and campfires (the source of the Wallow Fire). Thus far fire fighters (except for the Wallow fire) seem to be doing quite well. The Carlsbad fire is 90% contained, the Track Fire 50% contained, the Sipapu fire totally contained (they don't pronounce them out for a long time due to smoldering spars). But there are only 200 fire fighters in the entire state available currently. And I have to assume that some of those are being sent to the Pacheco fire believed at this time to be started by a hot exhaust from a vehicle off road.
Meanwhile I am looking for clouds. Wish I could remember exactly what they look like. I want to prove the weather forecasters wrong. Next ten days more of the same. I want my monsoons. The earth wants rain.