Thursday, December 17, 2009

Morning Glory video

The Morning Glory cloud is a rare meteorological phenomenon observed in Northern Australia Gulf of Carpentaria. A Morning Glory cloud is a roll cloud that can be up to 1000 kilometres long, 1 to 2 kilometres high, and can move at speeds up to 60 kilometres per hour.  In the front of the cloud, there is strong vertical motion that transports air up through the cloud and creates the rolling appearance, while the air in the middle and rear of the cloud becomes turbulent and sinks. The cloud can also be described as a solitary wave. The 178 pop. settlement of Burketown annually attracts glider pilots bent on riding this phenomenon.

I've flown extensively in wave back in the late 70's in sailplanes and fondly remember the smooth lift and the excitement of transitioning from the rough rotor to the laminar flow of the standing wave.  To fly it in a foot launched wing would be a thrill.  Here is a great video of the morning glory in Queensland.

A couple of the earlier scenes in the movie above remind me of being 17 & strapped into my 1946 Luscombe & flying low back when I was young & stupid. The tune is great too. . .