Advancing Cold Front Along the Blue Ridge Escarpment at Sunset

At sunset on October 7th, the first major cold front of the season was passing over the eastern escarpment of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Earlier thunderstorms had given way to smaller showers and fast moving clouds. This view is toward Lake Lure from a ridge just southeast of my house.

Turning toward the northwest, Hickory Nut Mountain was dominant over the changing woods. The white dot in the center of the photo marks the direction of my house, which is down in the valley over this ridge.

A twenty minute drive to the western summit of 2,400 foot Youngs Mountain at the north end of Lake Lure was rewarded with this majestic panorama (above).

Looking toward the northwest, the long escarpment ridge had two cigar shaped lenticular clouds hovering above its 3,500 foot peaks.

Turning toward the south, an ominous storm was moving northward through the gorge, dwarfing Rumbling Bald Mountain and covering the lake below.

Turning back toward 3,900 foot Mount Shumont to the west, the sun was just disappearing over the ridge. Another linticular cloud is visible over the mountain. If you look in the upper left you’ll see the faint contrail of a high flying passenger jet.

As the sun drops lower, the clouds take on the appearance of snow. Many of the clouds are actually composed of small ice crystals.
As the storm moves north, more of Mount Shumont is enshrouded in clouds.

The sun makes one last appearance as it disappears behind the foggy mountain.

6 thoughts on “Advancing Cold Front Along the Blue Ridge Escarpment at Sunset

  1. Awesome pictures, learned something new Lenticular clouds, fascinating! In the last 3 pictures, the clouds with the sun going down kind of looks like fire flames behind the mountain peak, pretty

  2. Beautiful!!! I’m so excited for the fall season to finally be upon us. We had our first fire of the season with that cold snap 🍁

  3. Memories of Cold Crisp WNC Mornings —before The Champion Paper and Fibre Company shut down and early morning walk started the day with the aroma of the plant in Canton floating East on the mornig air for many years

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