I believe they were examples of what I call "vertical" clouds and we've collected quite a gallery of them over at the AccuWeather.com Photo Gallery. The clouds are benign. Here's a photo I took of one in 2009:
In that case, it was simply a vertically-growing non-tornadic cloud. Things can get a little "cloudier" (if you will) when the vertical structures are associated with thunderstorms, as in the video I took below in 2011. Although impressive in the time-lapse video, the clouds themselves were just what are called "scud" clouds and are associated with the edges of thunderstorms, where moisture rises upwards.
Another type of "vertical" cloud is a trick of illusion. Near the edge of a shelf cloud (as depicted here at the beach in a photo I took in 2007), the cloud can appear to go straight up, as in the photo below, even though your eye is being fooled by the curve of the cloud and the Earth.
This is what happened in the photo below, taken by Photo Gallery user "wrh1593" in 2007:
The damage from the Moore, Okla., tornado of May 20, 2013, is incredible. These radar loops show the immensity of the tragic storm.
When I saw that Google had created a 30-year satellite time-lapse of Earth, I knew where the most impressive weather-related animations would be.
Whatever you call them -- "Ice Needling," "Ice Surges," or "Ice Shoves," or "Ice Heaves" -- a phenomenon that I first blogged about in 2009 is back -- with a vengeance!
17 years ago on this date, while I was taking my freshman exams at UNCA, a "cut-off" low was rumored to dump 57" of snow at nearby Mount Pisgah... but is that reading reliable?
Tornado reports and warnings are down for 2013 so far, and the last 12 months, but what about severe-thunderstorm-warned areas and lightning strikes?
The last two weeks have featured no less than four storm days, one with four storms, here in Central Pennsylvania and I've taken some neat pictures.