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Classifying Clouds by Mind Map: Classifying Clouds
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Classifying Clouds

Alto (Mid Level Clouds)


Height, 8-20,000ft

Weather Map Symbol

Description, Occurs in sheets or layers, carries precipitation.

Formation, Forms ahead of storms and is created by weather fronts.

Picture, Image of Altostratus Cloud


Height, 8-20,000ft

Weather Map Symbol

Description, White or grey, is in sheets or patches.

Formation, Altocumulus clouds are often seen proceeding a cold front and when see on hot days may be a sign that a thunderstorm is on the way.

Picture, Image of an Altocumulus



Height, Below 6,000ft

Weather Map Symbol

Description, Horizontal layering of clouds that looks like a fog.

Formation, Formed by cool air that comes together in layers.

Picture, Image of a stratus cloud


Height, Below 8,000ft

Weather Map Symbol

Description, Large, dark and rounded masses.

Formation, Formed over water and gradually diverge as they come overland.

Picture, An image of a stratocumulus cloud


Height, Below 8,000ft

Weather Map Symbol

Description, Flat and dark grey, usually brings rain.

Formation, Develops above 6,500ft

Picture, Image of an Nimbostratus cloud



Height, Above 23,000ft

Weather Map Symbol

Description, Thin and whispy.

Formation, They are the first sign of a warm front.

Picture, Image of a cirrus cloud


Height, Above 20,000ft

Weather Map symbol

Description, Difficult to see but are white, cover large portions of the sky.

Formation, Formed by large precipitation high in the sky and may signal a warm front.

Picture, An image of a cirrostratus


Height, Above 20,000ft

Weather Map Symbol

Description, A small grey or white patch

Formation, Occurs at high altitudes

Picture, Image of a cirrocumulus cloud

Vertical Growth Clouds


Height, Base below 6,500ft and tops may vary.

Weather Map Symbol

Description, Has a clear vertical development and is often described as puffy.

Formation, Forms when hot air rises and cools

Picture, An image of a cumulus cloud


Height, 6,500 to 75,000ft

Weather Map Symbol

Description, Cumulonimbus clouds are extremely tall, dense and are signs of thunderstorms.

Formation, They are formed by atmospheric instability and along cold fronts.

Picture, Image of a cumulonimbus