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Thornton, Colorado, USA
UpdatedSat, 17-Aug-2019 6:30pm MDT 
 

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Sunday brings brilliant sunrise and clouds to Thornton

Sunday, December 12th, 2010 8:23am MDT
A brilliant sunrise over south Thornton. View more images in the slideshow below. (ThorntonWeather.com)

A brilliant sunrise over south Thornton. View more images in the slideshow below. (ThorntonWeather.com)

A very chilly morning yielded a beautiful sunrise over south Thornton this morning.  ThorntonWeather.com was out for a walk and captured images of the brilliant red sky near the Spratt Lake facility. 

With mostly clear skies temperatures Sunday morning dipped clear down to 14.7 degrees – the coldest day we have seen this season.  Thankfully we will be warming up to above normal temperatures today as the forecast calls for a high of 54 degrees.

The images this morning not only include the spectacular sunrise but also lenticular and wave clouds.  

Lenticular clouds are one of the least common types and typically only occur at high altitudes near mountains with strong winds – both of which Colorado has in abundance.  These virtually stationary lens-shaped formations have been mistaken for UFO’s due to their rare appearance and unique saucer shapes. 

Also known by their scientific name of altocumulus standing lenticularis, these clouds are not entirely unusual in Colorado on the Front Range during the winter.  Strong jet winds force moist air to be pushed up by the rugged terrain of the adjacent Rocky Mountains.  This creates a wave-like pattern of air flow that condenses at high altitudes (usually around 20,000 feet). 

Below is a slideshow of some of the images we took this morning.

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