A sea of clouds.

2007-07-19 23:13:24.000 – Ryan Knapp,  Meteorologist

Our sea of clouds.

Midnight, the typical pea soup fog was met with much disenchantment. The thick fog gives everything that can be seen a uniform look. Even though it is pitch black out, I swear everything has a gray look to it. But the next hour brought hope as visibility began to improve and once unfocused objects began to once again take form. The next hours observation, the once gray sky became adorned with the vast expanse of stars I usually take in on a clear night. The only thing that remained was some stagnant fog right on the summit blocking my horizons. I checked out the auto road vertical profile and realized that my vistas were about to change even more.

As I stepped out this morning for my last observation, I witnessed one of our proverbial sunrises. Skies above the summit were a vibrant blue as the sun hugged the summit in a warm glow of yellows, reds, and oranges. Below the summit, vast oceans of clouds were creating a complete undercast. The highest summits in New Hampshire and Maine arose out of the cloud deck dotting the sea of clouds with islands of rocks, sedge, and trees. A light breeze caused the clouds to swirl in eddies around these mountain peaks. Clouds would hit the mountain islands and curl back like waves hitting a sea wall.

A total undercast is not a common sight up here. We get plenty of undercast conditions with plenty of variability but usually there is a gap somewhere or clouds rising above the summits are blocking our view. But this morning was solid in all directions with great visibility. So I grabbed the video camera and carefully scaled our ladders to the top of our parapet so I could share what I saw with everyone beneath our sea of clouds. This video is available on our Youtube.com site available through a link HERE.

Here are a few pictures as well for those of you who are on dial-up and can’t watch the video.

Picture 1 Picture 2 Picture 3 Picture 4 Picture 5 Picture 6


Ryan Knapp,  Meteorologist

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