The Country Diary of a GenX Woman

Smoked Mackerel Sky

20131219 012Smoke from bushfires has often given us some interesting sunsets, but this time, the smoke added a salmon tinge to the mackerel sky just after 6:30am.   According to Wikipedia : The occurrence of a mackerel sky  is an indicator of moisture and instability at intermediate levels, with the most common reason an old, disintegrating frontal system.  The cloud was probably originally altostratus and has been broken up into altocumulus as the weather front disintegrates (usually as a result of encountering an area of high atmospheric pressure).  Little, if any rain most often follows a mackerel sky.  The nautical weather rhyme, “Mare’s tails and mackerel scales / Make tall ships carry low sails.” as it usually meant a storm would be approaching and the sails should be lowered to protect from the accompanying high winds.

Another website asks:  Are Mackerel Scales and Mare’s Tails Good Predictors of Approaching Storms? In short, yes. The cloud systems that develop prior to a storm will often appear clumpy and wispy like a fish scale or horse tail!

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Inspired by The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady