It’s a different meaning to the phrase ‘morning glory’ that we’re all used to.
The spectacular cloud phenomenon forms after dawn for about two months a year across North Australia’s Gulf of Carpenteria, the Telegraph reports.
The clouds have been described as “a huge roll of cotton wool that stretches from one horizon to the other and is moving across the landscape at something like 40 kilometres per hour [25 miles per hour],” by Garrett Russell from the Caboolture Gliding Club in Queensland.
The clouds are a big of a meteorological enigma. This is what they look like from a satellite view:
The formation can occur as a lone strip or as a series of straight rolls, typically about 100 yards wide and up to 1.2 miles high.
Mr Russell said:
If you’re flying at full speed, with a cloud off to your side, sometimes you might have a wing dipped into the cloud and it reminds me of when you see a surfer put his hand out and cut through the wave.
Another pilot likened it to surfing: “We use the motor [in the glider] to get out and make contact with the cloud, and then we turn the engine off basically and commence gliding.”
The formation typically occurs over the sea but was witnessed in July over farmland around the small town of Blackall.
Apparently there are fewer people who have ridden the morning glory than have climbed Mount Everest (remember we’re talking about clouds and planes here).