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Mysterious Roll Cloud Moves Across Northern Virginia

Photo Credit: Scott Kanowitz


(Jason Samenow)  On the leading edge of a cold front gliding through the D.C. metro region this morning, a scary-looking tube-shaped cloud stretched across the skies in northern Virginia. It ended up signaling mostly benign weather, in the form of some showers that followed its passage.

This cloud type is known as a roll cloud or arcus cloud.

Resembling a giant dough roller, a roll cloud is completely detached from its parent shower or thunderstorm.

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