Weird Cloud or Did Someone Make That?

Something odd but interesting in the sky appeared on August 23, 2017 near Atmore, Alabama. Taylor Bowen and Jacqueline Hadley spotted it and shared photos. That was a day with showers and thunderstorms, and a lot of lightning. In their photos, you can clearly see a ring of something that looks like condensation, or a cloud, above the treeline, but you can't see what the source of the ring is.

One picture shows what seems to be a funnel cloud above the ring but it's hard to tell if it was just a cloud fragment or if it was a funnel; whether it was above the ring or in the distance behind it.

I wasn't there so I can't be positive what caused the ring but I highly suspect it was either something on the ground that may have exploded, possibly after being struck by lightning, or it could have been as simple as somebody doing a science experiment with a grill! These sorts of pictures are not unusual for transformers that get overloaded and explode so that is another possibility.

I did a simple demonstration at Discovery Cube Science Museum, in Orange County, California, to show how easy it is to make a smoke ring. It just takes a round object with an opening, and a source of smoke or vapor. Give it a gentle and even push from the inside and the smoke or vapor will move outward as a ring.

Not everything you see in the sky is caused by weather!

Alan Sealls

Mobile County

Baldwin County

Northwest Florida