How is hail formed? Basic and Common Weather Facts
Find out what causes hail to form during a thunderstormSo how is hail formed? Learn what causes this amazing weather phenomenon to take place.
If you've ever seen hail, you know it's quite an amazing sight to see. It will be storming and all of a sudden you will see or hear these white chunks from the sky falling like crazy. Afterwards the ground looks like snow in summertime. Although I've seen my fair share of hailstorms, I would still say it's a very rare sight to see. I haven't seen the huge baseball size stones like out in the Plains states, but mostly the pea size kind.
So how does hail form? For starters, you need a very strong and severe thunderstorm (See How Do Thunderstorms Form). During these storms, rain falls and then huge updrafts in the clouds takes the rain high up into the clouds. Since the tops of the clouds are very cold, the raindrops freeze and then because they are so heavy, they fall back down to the earth. It's actually a very simple process to explain.
Hailstones can vary in size. From pea sized stones on up to golfball and baseball sized. Once the hailstones start getting very big, that's when it becomes a very dangerouos situation. Many times large hailstones damage cars, houses, windows, etc, and can even cause injury if you are caught in the middle of one.
You can usually tell how strong a thunderstorm is (out of many other ways) by the size of the hail. Supercell cloud tops can reach very high in the sky and have very strong updrafts. This allows already frozen raindrops to keep getting pulled to the top and refrozen all over again.
The hailstone is finally heavy enough to fall to the ground once it reaches golfball or baseball size. Hailstorms don't usually last that long and are over in a matter of minutes, which is good if you are caught in one.
Back To Top of How is Hail Formed
Lightning strike on the Renaissance Center
Enjoy This Site?
Then why not use the button below, to add us to your favorite bookmarking service?
Copyright© Severe Weather Fan 2010-2013.