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How lenticular clouds are formed

lenticular clouds

Photo: Yurio1978/Shutterstock

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Riding the waves

When the moist air reaches the crest of the mountain, a wave pattern, or atmospheric standing wave, is created in the air flow. As the air hits the crest of the wave and moves downward, the cloud formed at the crest may evaporate, forming the cloud which sits at the very crest of the wave. Sometimes strings of lenticular clouds form at each crest of each successive wave in the wind pattern.