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Mountains in the Sky

We don't have mountains in Florida so as photographers we look to clouds for inspiration. We get all kinds depending on the time of year. These here are typical for winter, in the summer they are even more dramatic. You could say these are our mountains in the sky.

I took this last week after the rain passed. It was the kind of rain that washes everything and then breaks up in the afternoon, just in time for a sunset. That happens regularly because of the Florida climate. The heat during the day creates disturbances and then the sun recedes and the energy dissipates. As a result we get these displays which keep cloud watchers like me busy.

Often there are evenly spaced rows of puffy "cotton-candy" clouds. For some reason they only appear over the land, never the shore. Broken clouds like these at sunset are my favorite. I used a wide angle lens so they appear to converge on the horizon.

Because of the geography and heat, clouds are part of the landscape here. They are stand-ins for mountains and you can't help but notice them. If I was a mariner I'd know how to read them and know what they foretell. Nevertheless I think a little bit of that ability rubs off on anyone who takes the time to look up and wonder.

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