What causes these clouds?

Hello! I took these photos yesterday morning (July 12th 2020), it has been bothering me what causes these clouds ever since. I couldn’t find a legitimate answer, so I decided to resort here to ask. Does anybody know what causes these kinds of clouds? I already know for a fact that they aren’t contrails because I don’t think there are that many flights anywhere at any time ever. Also, if this is in the wrong topic, feel free to let me know. Thanks for the help!


Hey! If I’m not mistaken, I believe those are Stratocumulus (Ripple) clouds. It’s just another type of cloud like Stratus and Nimbus clouds. More information can be found here. Beautiful pictures by the way!


The ripples form when humid air at the far-flung edges of the storm system pushes past clear, cool air high in the sky. It’s the resistance of the cool air to this motion that causes the ripples. Ridges of cloud form where water vapour cools and condenses, while troughs of space form where it warms and re-evaporates.



Yes just to add to what has been said, it’s a very high level cloud as well. And from the little I know about it I believe it rarely builds up precipitation, unlike the CBs.


Can I just say… imagine having these in IF 😍😍😍


These clouds remind me of “the highways in the skies” that are mention in the Disney Movie “Planes”. I agree with @KaiM, how awesome would it be to go in a wing view and see these clouds in Infinite Flight?!

Wow. Interesting. Thanks for the info.

@JarrettFlies Thats exactly what I thought when I saw them 😁

Just as everyone else has said, these are upper level clouds. The wave like formation of them is actually the rising and falling motion of the air in that part of the atmosphere, similar to ocean waves. These clouds can occasionally signify light to moderate turbulence as well!