Cirrus Spissatus

Above: Cirrus Spissatus

Cirrus Spissatus

What are cirrus spissatus clouds?

This is a part of the cirrus genus however unlike the cirrus incinus or cirrus fibratus, the cirrus spissatus clouds are denser and can completely block out the sun’s rays. Unlike the other cirrus clouds, the cirrus spissatus also links itself to other cloud formations such as the cumulonimbus clouds.

Cumulonimbus clouds are not part of the cirrus family of cloud formations. These are classified as low level clouds and commonly cover the sky with their density.

What height are cirrus spissatus clouds found?

These cirrus spissatus clouds, if not linked from the cumulonimbus clouds, are normally found at about 20,000 feet or higher however if they are trailing off the cumulonimbus clouds, which are commonly low lying clouds, they can be lower, at between 5,000 and 10,000 feet.

Classification of cirrus spissatus clouds

There are different varieties of cirrus spissatus clouds that include

  • The cirrus spissatus duplicatus clouds which are cirrus spissatus clouds formed that are not connected to cumulonimbus clouds. Basically the duplicatus formations are individually formed.


  • The cirrus spissatus intortus clouds are similar to a messy accumulation of normal cirrus clouds. Unlike normal cirrus clouds however, these tend to be more dense and sometimes have a gray base;


  • The cirrus spissatus cumulonimbogenitus clouds are cirrus spissatus clouds that are generated from cumulonimbus capillatus or thunderstorm clouds. These are a clear indicator of rain or a heavy storm.


These different classifications do not detract from the fact that the cirrus spissatus clouds are in essence the same. However based on whether they are conjoined to other cloud structures, or are variations of the cirrus cloud, the specific classifications may differ. There are other general classifications that fall into this category as well.

How are cirrus spissatus clouds formed?

These cirrus spissatus clouds are unique as they have the ability to form both at the higher and lower stratosphere. Generally classified as the highest of the cirrus cloud formation types, they are formed similar to normal cirrus clouds although in addition, the cirrus spissatus clouds are also formed with the dissipation of cumulonimbus clouds as well.

If the cirrus spissatus cloud formation is based on a blow-off of the cumulonimbus clouds, then the formation tends to be denser.

What do cirrus spissatus clouds look like?

Their most unique feature is the mares’ tail and the fact that these clouds when they are on their own, and when they are attached to cumulonimbus clouds, the characteristic mares’ tail will nonetheless be visible at the end of the trail of clouds.

This often makes it difficult to distinguish the cirrus spissatus by itself particularly since cirrus spissatus cumulonimbogenitus cloud formations also look similar. In essence, whether these are cirrus spissatus that are stand alone or known as cirrus spissatus duplicatus, or not, the primary feature is the mares’ tail.

How common are cirrus spissatus clouds?

These are very common cloud formations.

Where can I see cirrus spissatus clouds?

These cirrus spissatus cloud structures are found all over the world.

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