Shelter from the wind


On autumn days when my father took me on motorcycle rides, I would press my cheek against the back of his leather jacket and shield myself from the wind.  It was cozy, comforting, and almost still.  Walking to work on windy winter days, I hide behind tall SUVs hoping that the gust of wind will pass and I can leapfrog to the next barricade before the wind slaps me in the face with its icy palm.

This image shows the trails of snowflakes in the shadows of pebbles, a few cm wide.  The pebbles create turbulence in the laminar wind (moving from left to right in this photograph) and allows the snow to remain or even accumulate in the space ‘behind’ the pebble.  Glaciers can produce similarly-shaped landforms when they slide over highly resistant bedrock bumps and leave trails of sediment behind the objects.


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