Test Your Cloud I.Q.

During our recent spate of sunny days, I've been enjoying going through my completely unorganized files of cloud photos I've taken over the past several years. Until fairly recently, I couldn't name the type of cloud in the photo--a bit of knowledge that would have helped me organize them into ten tidy folders. 

Now, with lots of practice, some guess work, and some help from my meteorologist in Arizona, I am posting here a slide show of clouds for you to try your hand at identifying.

Click on the image below to advance the slides to see fourteen photos representing some of the main cloud types and some variations. Just below this slideshow, you'll find the same slides with cloud names provided. (The first name is the genus, the name in parenthesis is the species or variety).The two sets of slides are in slightly different order so as to discouraging peeking.

To refresh: The ten main cloud types: Stratus, Stratocumulus, Cumulus, Nimbostratus, Cumulonimbus, Altocumulus, Altostratus, Cirrostratus, Cirrocumulus, and Cirrus.

Remember: The slide set above is your quiz; the set below, in different order, has the answers. 

This is a great sunny-day activity when you are just too tired to slather on more sunblock or have exhausted your vocabulary for describing the skies of a Pacific Northwest summer: "perfect," "clear," "azure," "stunning," "cloudless," "crystal clear," "brilliant," etc.