Stacy Nicholson & Skip Wood, visiting Colorado from Moorhead, Minnesota, wrote saying they’ve never seen anything like it.READ MORE: Denver Public Schools Requires Masks For All Students, Staff While Indoors
These clouds are known as Kelvin-Helmholtz instability clouds, named for Lord Kelvin and Hermann von Helmholtz, and they are formed due to wind shear in the atmosphere.
Wind shear is a change in either speed, direction, or both over a short distance.
The wind shear creates waves in the flow of air and when there is enough moisture present to make a cloud, the result is little rolling eddies seen along the top of the cloud.READ MORE: Denver Records 29 Consecutive Days With Bad Air, On Pace For Record Season
These eddies are usually evenly spaced and easily identifiable and often don’t last too long.
Kelvin-Helmholtz instability clouds are most commonly seen in mountainous areas and they indicate extreme turbulence for aircraft.MORE NEWS: Denver Police Ask For Public's Help With Unsolved Hit & Run That Injured Scooter Driver