Mammatus clouds visit Michiana Monday

NOW: Mammatus clouds visit Michiana Monday

As clouds moved in during the afternoon, sky gazers were treated to a relatively rare sight over Michiana on Monday.

Large mammatus clouds moved through southwestern Michigan and northern Indiana along with some light rain showers.

Mammatus in South Bend Jeffrey Aughinbaugh

While these picturesque clouds aren't unheard of across Michiana, to see them form without a thunderstorm nearby is a bit rare. 

Most clouds form in environments of rising air. But mammatus clouds "form downward" in sinking air. Basically, because these clouds form in an area with high water/ice particles, they are heavy enough that they sink. Eventually, the cooler and heavier air leads to mammatus clouds that build below the main layer.

Mammatus clouds in Benton Harbor Monday afternoon. Patrick Hooker

The sights in Michiana skies today definitely made Monday more bearable! 

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