Nature's not much for subtlety. Just ask Chris Tangey, the man who watched in awe as a 100-foot-high (30-meter-high) whirlwind of fire tore around a patch of Australian Outback on Tuesday (Sept. 11).
Filmmaker Chris Tangey captured rare video footage, a still of which is seen here, of a "fire devil" in the Australian Outback. CREDIT: Chris Tangey via Youtube user stilltalkincrazy
Tangey, a filmmaker, managed to capture some very rare footage of the startling phenomenon while out scouting locations near Alice Springs, Australia, according to The Australian.
One term for the event he recorded, a fire tornado, is a misnomer, according to Mark Wysocki, New York's state climatologist and a professor of atmospheric sciences at Cornell University. The columns of spinning fire are much more similar to dust devils than tornadoes, Wysocki said.
"I would just call them fire vortices but that doesn't sound so sexy to the public, so I would call them fire devils," he told Life's Little Mysteries.
See the video live here.
A storm system responsible for severe weather across the Plains over the past week, as well as the snow across the Rockies will advance eastward.
The Highway Fire started around 6:10 p.m. PDT Saturday near Corona, California, in the Prado Dam area in Riverside County, and grew from 30 to 175 acres in a matter of three hours.
For the second half of the weekend and into the week, rain and wind will replace the pleasant, sunny conditions of the first part of the weekend.
After a steady rain closes out the weekend, more showers and cooler air will persist through much of the week.
A pattern favoring waves of progressively cooler air will set up across much of the Midwest and Northeast during next week and could continue into early May.
Round after round of drenching rain will continue to cause flooding in the South, while another dose of rain may renew flooding in the Ohio Valley this weekend.
Lexington, MA (1775)
Lexington-Concord Day; crisp anticyclone morning at 0700: 45.7 degrees, 29 56" rising, wind west, force 1, "very fair" sky - Prof. Winthrop noted at Cambridge, MA: "Battle of Concord will put a stop to observing."
Southern New Hampshire (1785)
Last snow of a famous late winter raised snow cover to 3 feet. Crust that supported horses that morning began to dissolve that afternoon.
Nation City, SD (1881)
79-day snow blockade lifted -- first train arrived.