04/05/05 REPORTS: Central/Southern Plains

Status
Not open for further replies.
COMPLETE CHASE LOG CAN BE FOUND HERE - Updated April 6 @ 10:22am MDT

Personally, I'd stay away from areas in NE Oklahoma and far Eastern Kansas as I think tomorrow's best tornado potential will in fact be near the SFC low.

Well, I was right... I just wasn't there! :lol:

Verne Carlson and I observed a helluva squall line in Southeastern Kansas this afternoon. We punched the line east of I-35 on US Hwy 160 and then ran north along side her to the east as we intercepted several tornado warned cells embedded within the line. None of the cells tornado'd, but we had some driving hail, crazy rain, and a lightning bolt which picked off a tree 10 feet from the car as we hauled-ass north along the line. It was so close, we both physically felt the shock. My hands, which were attached firmly to the steering wheel, felt hot and numb for several minutes. Verne's arms had a tingling feeling as well. All I remember seeing was the bright white flash, Verne saw the sparks, and the instantanious POW which sounded like something inside the car exploded. While there were no evident marks on my car, I wouldn't be surprised if it took some kind of a hit. To be honest, it was pretty damn cool! 8)

We dropped back south in hopes of catching the southern most cell which was at the tail end of the line which we had been straddling most of the afternoon. That cell died a slow and painful death. We picked up some storms right along the dryline later on US Hwy 56 as we headed back to the west to hit I-135. We stopped in El Dorado where we nearly had our ears blasted off by wind driven marble hail on top of the aluminum roof which he took shelter under during this storm.

All-in-all, not a bad way to start the season! It was actually my first April non-bust chase! We had a great time! Many thanks to Verne Carlson for sharing my ride and conserving cash for gas. We managed nearly 35 miles per gallon the entire trip! How's that for sick.. and yes, it was before AND after the alternator was replaced. Special thanks to Amos Magliocco for his nowcasting expertise!

Great day... nice to ring in 2005 finally!

COMPLETE CHASE LOG CAN BE FOUND HERE - Updated April 6 @ 10:22am MDT
 
Everything looked so good this morning for at least some sort of severe activity today. When I got up at 5:00 and did a brief data check there were some favorable factors (good dew, promise of excellent daytime heating, surface low action, frontal stuff) . . . and then around 7:00 or so this morning this cloud cover just rolled in. Daytime heating killed. We needed surface temps of at least 75+ to overcome the cap. The closest we came today was at the 0z sounding from OAX which showed some erosion of the cap, but not enough to allow any real convection.

If that cloud cover would have burned off like I was hoping it would, even at 2:00 PM, something might have popped.

To an extent I'm disappointed in myself for getting my hopes up on such an early system.

It was just too good to be true.
 
Well, my chase didn't go near as well as Tony and Verne's. I didn't get started until 3:30. and then it was really a chase. I attempted to catch up and head off the 50 mph storm line in the Pawhuska area. That didn't pan out. So I continued on to Bartlesville via US 60. Made it there just in time for a T-Warned cell to over pass and couldn't see a thing for all the rain! Little doubt that I was near the area of circulation that was warned, but blasted by the wind and rain, I just wasn't up to see what was over that mountain. Also got some pea size hail buffeted about by 40 mph winds, but nothing to really write home about. I think Tony and Verne had the right idea staying to the north as traffic in B'ville was a pain.

From there I cut north on US 75 hoping to catch OK 10 across to Wann OK and attempt another head off, but just north of Dewey, I came across a Van that was on fire. Oh well. so much for the chase. The Van on fire was the best video I had during the whole trip. I did get to stop in at Fox 23 Studios in Tulsa though. That was quite a trip as I've never had the opportunity to be in a large Network Studio.

Many thanks to George Flickinger for letting me know where the major cells were. It just wasn't my turn at the plate this time. I'll try to get some video of the Van up soon (as soon as I find a place to host it). Congrats to Tony and Verne!

John Diel
 
I didn't expect all that much today. Target area was south of Ada, OK. I went south to Sulfur when Cu already started to break the cap. Soon a line formed rapidly. I was on the south end of one line and watched the storm near Ada. It was not that impressive. I opted to go farther south to catch the next storm. It got better organized and looked very HPish near Atoka. I drove up 69 to McAlester just ahead of the storm. In Savanna, I decided to find shelter and let the storm overtake me to film the hail. I only saw very small hail and wasn't impressed with it. At this point the storm got ahead of me and I decided that was it for the day. I met up with Rocky in Henrietta for dinner. After eating we were treated to a nice mommatus display.

Pictures are at:
http://www.cloud9tours.com/bear/2005/040505.html
 
We were on the atoka storm as well. We spent ~2 hours in Atoka county today on that HPish storm and the rest of the squall line. We had one very good ~30 minute period where we had an organized wall cloud and rotation, but after that, things were in complete squall mode. After trying to get south, but soon realizing the line was into Texas, we ate and headed home. Oh well, on to the weekend...
 
We drove south, stopping in Ardmore and Durant to make nowcast calls to Dwain Warner. Everyone was in agreement that Hugo/Paris looked to be the place, so we continued to Hugo. Set-up there and waited, and waited, and waited....while the storms along the dryline west of us continued to intensify. Finally new development ahead of the line was evident, so we moved south to Paris and then east to Honey Grove.

From there we went south on TX 34/50 to Ladonia, then further south to just south of Wolfe City. There we finally got some definition on a single storm, which had a somewhat impressive strucutre, with a cascading RF inflow tier and a classic, beaver tailish FF inflow band. Winds at the surface backed to SE, and for a little bit things looked like they might get interesting. But alas, it soon became full-blown ouflow dominant, so we moved back north up TX34 to just south of Honey Grove, where we stopped and decided to just the let the storm crash us (wasn't anything better to do).

We got hammered for over four solid minutes with pea-dime size hail, so loud we couldn't hear each other speak. After that ended, the road was white with hail, as we heard someone announce a tornado warning for Collin County, for a storm near Farmersville. Apparently this guy issued his own warning, because we never heard about it again from him or NOAA. We'd gone after the storm anyway, and attempted to once again let it slam us, going for some wind/hail shots. We didn't get far enough south and missed the meat of it, so we tried one last shot at redemption by heading down to Commerce for the last core we could see. This too moved east of us before we could reach it, so we threw in the towel and headed home.

Highlights of the trip included a structure fire in Kingston, OK that was throwing insane amounts of black smoke across US70 as we drove by (it was some sort of an out-building, not a home), finding gas in Boswell, OK for $2.01/gallon, and hearing Tool's "Disgustipated" on the radio - a true rarity, a first (though they did cut off the crickets and secret message at the end).

I just don't understand cold core lows. How in the hell can you get tornadoes with 20s dewpoints? I hate cold core systems, I hate them with a passion.

Thanks to Dwain for great nowcasting, no one does it better
 
Well, ended up driving to Paris, Texas for the second time this year already. Much preferred the first chase there, however.

Ended up on the same cell as Shane was mentioning, near Wolfe City. This storm had an impressive shelf cloud/core definition on it as it approached Hwy 69 north of Greenville. Stopped to videotape some of it, and ended up taking too much time and got sideswiped by the north end of the hail core in Celeste, Texas. Jason Politte was kind enough to return a nowcasting call to inform me that the meso would be passing just to my south. Sure enough, dropping back south on 69, I broke out of the precip to view a beautifully backlit wall cloud about 1 mile to my west. However, it didn't seem to show any signs of rotation, and quickly scudded out as it passed to my north.

These storms were highly electrical, as well! This made for a rather enjoyable drive back on I-20 as I made sure to stay just behind the line. With little to no precip to block my view, the lightning was worth several stops for video.

On an interesting side note; just to the east of my hometown of Henderson, Texas, there were reports of "tea-cupped sized" hail. These were noted as being thrown out the backside of the updraft of an intense cell that had moved off to the east of the area. That's twice I missed significant reports near my home while I was, ironically, off chasing.

Marcie
 
Similar story as Shane and Marcie... Headed to Ardmore then Madill to await convection... Saw the storms developing along the dryline, and kept pace with them as they headed eastward. Tried to make a data stop in Durant, though to no avail (for whatever reason, my internet connection stopped working while driving to Madill)... Noticed that stuff to the north was line-segment in nature, so dropped south. Drove through some small hail (pea-sized mostly) near Denison... Drove southeast towards Bonham and eventually Honey Grove (on 82). The convection was highly linear at this time (was a semi-cool shelf cloud at one time), though we noted a more discrete cell to the south... Dropped south on Hwy 50 through Ladonia and Commerce... Thought we may have some okay action to our west-southwest, though that cell interacted with a cell to it's south, and took on strong outflow-dominant appearance. Ended up calling it a day with an hour of sun left... Was about to throw the radio out the window as FWD statements continued to mention the possibility of tornadic supercells in the afternoon and evening...

The storms today just looked like garbage for the most part. Heck, the updrafts on 3-21 looked better (more solid and rigorous) with 1000 CAPE than the updrafts did today with 2000-2500 CAPE. I expected to at least see some rock-solid updrafts given the awesome lapse rates and resultant vertical acceleration expected. All in all, I was disappointed with the way things played out today, though I suppose ya can't win 'em all. I was especially hoping for some good tornado action since I brought along a friend who had always wanted to come chasing with me... I would have been pleased with some awesome supercell structure, but that wasn't to be had.

How long before TRUE Gulf moisture?

EDIT: My chase log and map are up at http://www.tornadocentral.com/chasing/2005...05/040505.shtml
 
I had a similar day to the other Oklahoman chasers as well. We got down to Ardmore just as the convection along the whole dryline fired up around 2:15 pm. Note to other chasers: the Wifi worked great for me at the Love's TruckStop there so I can vouch that the service is free and available!

I quickly discounted that as a linear mess and we headed to Texas hoping for a discrete cell. Unfortunately, everything went linear down there as well so we eventually rode out the squall line near the uniquely named small town of Tom Bean, TX just after 5 pm. There we encountered a 15 minute long hailstorm! Thankfully nothing larger than nickel sized so no car dents to worry about.

The 500 mb winds were screaming yesterday afternoon because the tops of the convection were sheared out tens of miles. This certainly didn't help create an environment suitable for sustainable discrete updrafts. It was a disappointing chase, but we did make a storm report so you can never feel as if its a total waste when that occurs. It is never good when your favorite photo of the day is of the restaurant you ate dinner at on your way back home though haha. I highly recommend Hobo Joe's Diner in Madill, OK.

Check out my full chase report and photos at:
http://weather.ou.edu/~nwilson/chase2.html
 
I am Posting our chase report for Kanani who is still waiting for her posting priveleges but wrote our account.


Okay, here goes my first post for a chase account. Please bear with me as I will get better everytime I post!

Date: April 5, 2005

Who: Kanani Foster and Jay McCoy

Departure City: Amarillo, TX

Target: Ardmore,OK

Actual Initiation Point: We wern't quite there when storms fired.

Severe WX Observed: Large Microburst (West of Tushka,OK)
Quarter sized hail (Atoka, OK)
Winds of 60 mph (Atoka, OK)

First chase of the year! I was so excited this morning when Jay called me up and told me to meet him at work at 11:00. Poor Jay went back to work Monday night to catch up so he could get off early today to chase. Thanks Jay! We knew that the possibility of seeing tornadoes today were slim but with both of us suffering from SDS this was an opportunity to see some kind of severe weather. We headed out about 11:00am to our target area of Ardmore, OK. (357 miles) Made pretty good time but knew we ran the risk of playing catch up to these storms if they fired before we got there. At 2:30 pm outside of Grandfield we observed our first towers going up near I-35. We were still 90 miles from target area when the first storm fired. We arrived at target area at 3:40 and decided to continue east on Hwy 70 to get east of the storms so we could get on the southern storm. At 4:26 we had our first bolt of lightning!!! I was never so happy in all my life. As we continued on we ran across pea sized hail on the road. We were worried we were too late to catch anything but at 4:45 a local TV station was showing radar and the radar showed a break in the line on a storm due east of Tishamongo, OK. We took 78 southeast to try to intercept the storm. We were able to get to Hwy 69 where we went into full chase mode. We were able to make out a base for a brief period in time before a large microburst occured just west Of Tushka, OK. We could see the rotation taking over in the new wall just before we got caught in the wraparound in Tushka. We thought we could drive through it and catch the base which was now leaving us at a rapid pace. The storms were moving NE at 35 mph. We continued north on 69 to Atoka, OK where we ran into the hail core. It started out as heavy rain, then you could hear the pings of hail. It went from pea sized to dimes, nickels, and even some quarters. You have to love the sound of hail hitting the roof and yelling at your partner to be heard! There was extensive flooding in Atoka and lots of water on the road that we were on (good thing Jay had put Rain-X on last night!). Unfortunately, the road we were on was going NE, the same as the storm. We were in heavy precipitation (we hydroplaned SEVERAL times even though we were doing 35 mph) for an hour and never could catch up. The storms were moving as fast as we were and we saw another radar update at 5:40. It appereard that the storms had once again lined out and were racing off. We had already had our near death experiance for one chase and decided to call it a day. We broke off the chase at Kiowa and decided it was time to make the LONG trip home.

Here are some pics of the storms. Didn't get alot today as we had to keep driving to keep up with the storms!


http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v652/tor...05/DSC00404.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v652/tor...05/DSC00409.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v652/tor...05/DSC00412.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v652/tor...05/DSC00414.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v652/tor...05/DSC00420.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v652/tor...05/DSC00422.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v652/tor...05/DSC00425.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v652/tor...05/DSC00429.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v652/tor...05/DSC00430.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v652/tor...05/DSC00433.jpg

Actual Breakoff Point: Kiowa, OK

Miles driven total: 800
Hours on the road: 14
That is what we call a DEEP STRIKE!


Happy Chasing!
Kanani

EDIT::: the links are now working.. Sorry for the screwup.
 
Well...I decided to play the Low and went Northwest out of OKC...unfortunately, not far enough. I did get to see a bunch of rain though.....

This was a bust created out of economics. I really would have liked to have gone further NW into Kansas, but with the combination of uncertainty about the tornado possibilities, and the steadily increasing gas prices as I drove NW, I chose not to continue past Canton.
 
I was on the same Washington County Oklahoma tornado warned storm that John Diel posted about a little earlier. My chase account and photographs can be found at the two links below. I thought I did a decent job at picking my target of Choutea, Oklahoma, and then going to the storms after checking data in Pryor, Oklahoma. I saw some cloud lowerings along the rain free base on the Washington County Oklahoma storm when it was to the east of Bartlesville, but I didn't see any rotation at that time. Overall, I can't complain about my chase, because if I had stayed home all I would've seen was rain.

Southeast Kansas Chase Blog:
http://seksweather.blogspot.com/

Photo Website:
http://rparsons.photosite.com/Washington_C...ounty_Oklahoma/
 
April 05, 2005 South-eastern KS

[Broken External Image]:http://www.stormchaserco.com/20050405_ElDorado1_sm.jpg

This is a storm that fired up along the dryline east of El Dorado, KS on HW 54 late in the day as Tony and I were heading back to CO. About 10 minutes after this shot we took shelter under a gas station awning from nickel size hail. Some of you may have seen Tony's video on TWC today.

www.stormchaserco.com/20050405_ElDoradoKS.MOV

File sizes are less than 1Mb each, to view place your cursor in the window and then move your mouse while holding down the left mouse button.

Earlier in the day we caught the squall line over Elk County, KS. This shot is from near Moline, KS at HW160 and 99. It went Tornado warned about 20 mins after this shot was taken.

www.stormchaserco.com/20050405_ElkCountyKS.MOV

Click this link for my complete report:
www.stormchaserco.com/20050405
 
I went with the cold core target and headed West out of Wichita a little after noon. I ended up parking on a country road about 10 miles Northwest of Kingman to wait for initiation. After about a half an hour there was a storm that fired along the dryline a couple of miles to the South of me. I stayed on this storm for a couple of hours until more storms started to go up off its Southeast flank. Wasn't much to look at, but it was nice to get out.
 
216e72f47147af03f470ec641068316d.jpg

I just had to step out the door at work for the above photo.

Most of south, central, and northeast Tulsa received a high dollar hail storm about 4:30pm. For those of you familiar with Tulsa, most residents and businesses between Riverside and Memorial suffered hail damage to roofs, cars, and some broken glass...GF
 
Peggy and I chased in central KS near the dryline on 04-05-05. We saw a
briefly organized base on a cell near Chase, KS and then met up with Jon
Davies and Jim Reed on the road around 4:30 and had a fun dinner in
McPherson, KS. After dinner we headed East on I-70, intercepted the severe line near Abilene, KS and saw some great hail and lightning just after sunset. All in all a nice chase for the first one of the year!

Photos and chase log posted at:
http://www.twistersisters.com/040505.htm

Good luck!
Mel
 
Gene Moore and I decided to target North Texas for supercells, and hopeful tornadoes. Neither of us
had any interest in driving all the way to western KS for landspout cold core torns; and whereas
Eastern Oklahoma did have a number of features of interest (Tulsa was mentioned) we weren't too
happy that the RUC was showing the 60s dewpoints mostly ending south of the Red. Now it is true that
the focus, of the PVA was headed for northeastern OK, and the 850mb and surface winds even appeared
to have slightly more potential to be backed a bit more. However there was progged a 250mb jet to
come into north TX placing the area mostly east of a N/S line through the DFW area in the left exit
region. Also, some models / times showed that there might be non-veered 850mb and surface winds
south of the Red briefly or at least (keyword: hopefully) in this north TX area. Actually I didn't
have a lot of faith in those winds necessarily materializing but, I felt with the lower dewpoints
north it wasn't necessarily much better. Also I checked a number of forecast parameters (craven,
sigtor, sup comp, etc) using different model input and it indicated that east TX had some real
potential for severe. My general idea for the day was to perhaps start near Ardmore and work south
ahead of the dryline as it developed later into the day working into east TX where better helicity
was a possibility. Near 0Z I wondered if Paris had a shot again, or possibly an area due south of
Paris and southeast of DFW where most of the 250mb influence would be. Of course, as it turned out
the surface and 850mb winds never really materialized the way we wanted. The 250mb jet did do its
thing and created at least one big storm south of DFW but that occurred late in the day.

As I understand it, all things being considered (drive time, etc) Gene pretty much agreed with my
assessment. We headed north in plenty of time before the dryline fired, and parked on the north side
of McKinney where we obtained oodles of free broadband to monitor the situation. It was a really
nice sunny day with fairly low cumulus scattered about - fodder as storm food. The expected cold
core stuff started fairly early in western KS. We watched as the dryline began to fire in southern
OK and eventually the Ardmore area fired. One of those storms showed some pretty good rotation - I
think it was the Ardmore storm. However we decided to stick with our forecast. Reminds me of the old
issue in the movie 'Top Gun' - Cruise always repeats "You never leave your wing man". In my mind
that is synonymous with the phrase/ concept "You never leave your forecast area". Finally the area
on the Red fired, and then storms just to the west of McKinney, and also north of there - somewhat
southwest of Sherman. I was all 'teched' out with my new Gateway notebook, and making my 2nd working
run with Wxworx.

I might add that morning, I finally pulled out some velcro and got some straps and ingenuity going
and finally organized some of the equipment / wire mess in the right seat area of my Tahoe. Those
who have chased with me before can attest that it is often like a bird's nest spaghetti tangle of
wires and equipment haphazardly strewn about. Gene's been after me for years about organizing this.
I was very hyped that I finally did something about it. Everything had a place and I even labeled
wires. Organization! Wow! What a concept!

As our storm was firing up, we headed north on hwy 75 toward Sherman. Already the storm was draped
somewhat across the hwy oriented somewhat WSW/ENE. As we approached Wxworx was working flawlessly
displaying all it's products, and showing our position utilizing input from GPSgate. Wxworx began to
announce something like "Warning, you are approaching a Strong storm, please be careful". Or
something like that. After it went off a few times we cut the volume as it was getting monotonous.
We decided they needed to let us customize it to say different things each time, and things like
"You are approaching a dangerous storm, please get your tripods, and cameras ready".

We sailed on up with Gene monitoring SA2005. I remarked how already the area to our west and
northwest (the lowered base area near the inflow region) had began to have some precip falling and
would be over town soon. This is where the largest hail would be falling. Gene was going to have me
exit and take an east road soon, but guess we were distracted looking at stuff. At the last moment
we realized that we had just passed our turn. Next stop storm core directly ahead - LOL! That was
probably fine with me as I wanted to see what the storm had going. We continued north and almost
immediately found out as winds picked up and buckets of rain were falling. We were being constantly
pelted with pea to nickel size hail, and the roads and gullies were flooding. For awhile it seemed
like it was getting worse. I figured this was a quickly maturing storm that would go supercell, and
might start dropping baseballs any time. Well, that and I thought possibly it already was but we
just weren't quite yet in the worst part of the core. Gene continued to give directions as I drove
crisscross through the residential streets of the southeast side of Sherman. It was actually kind of
funny and entertaining. However I figured losing the front windshield this early on would certainly
be a detriment to chasing the rest of the day so I wanted to avoid that if possible. And that of
course is the downside of core punching. It can be good to get you somewhere fast because of the
direct route, but it can also slow your forward speed because of conditions. If you lose a window
you have that to deal with, plus there isn't much visibility so you don't know what is going on with
your storm. We finally broke out to the east and raced away from the hail core, which was now to our
west, and southwest. We were headed east on hwy 56 and almost immediately saw a sign that said "Road
Closed Ahead - Bridge Out". "Huh"? Major road out as we are trying to stay out of the core. This was
a bit interesting also because of course we targeted this cell for it's tornado potential - at least
that is what we had hoped. That means that we being further east would now be very close to any
developing tornado that might develop to our southwest but we could be pinned against the bridge. We
looked for other roads, but in our haste they all looked small and of questionable value for our
purposes. There was no close by eastbound roads we could see. Rather than waiting and getting
pummeled by whatever this storm could next manifest we decided to return west instead. Knowing what
lay in the very dark area to our SW and WSW I 'boogied' west. Back in Sherman it was clearing, but
water was still flowing down the roads. Looks like that town can flood easily.

We got back on 75 and started south but realized there was an even heavier core ahead to our south
and southeast. We pulled over and took some time to assess the storm situation and our location
versus that of our target. We decided to go south for another east road (hopefully without a closed
road). Of course, there was construction going on all over this part of Hwy 75. I exited to the
access road to outsmart the construction managers who had turned 75 into a single lane, which was
backing up traffic. This was a great plan until I ran into the dead end due to construction. Ok,
well we used SA some more to navigate around - went here and then there trying to get an east road
option. Finally we managed an east road option off of the eastern side access road. The road was
called Akers Rd. We could see pools of pea sized hail in places along the way.

This is where it gets interesting again as we were using Wxworx combined with Street Atlas 2005 for
navigation. Now let me say this about Wxworx. So far, I really love it. This is my second chase this
season using it and on both chases I never needed to make a cellphone connection for data. Between
Wxworx and free wifi - that's all I needed and I suspect all I will mostly ever need. However Gene
and I found out that it isn't always that accurate and that can present some problems if you choose
to use it as a core punch tool. Previously on the eastern side of Sherman it had been saying we
should be almost out of the rain and hail but it was still very persistently heavy. Now as we
continued east on Akers trying to get into position for the potentially developing tornadic portion
of the storm we began to enter the other core. We thought we were taking a trip through the 'Red'
area on the radar and trying to miss most of the 'Purple'. It seemed that most of the rain must
still be elevated and perhaps the radar was showing very heavy rain overhead but we found out
otherwise. Turns out rather than almost being out of this rain through a light area, instead we were
entering a very strong area - most likely purple. We were somewhat incredulous trying to figure out
why we kept getting hard rain, and hail. It just kept getting darker, and darker, and darker. I
decided it must be a time offset and that the storm was probably about 5 miles or so further along
in it's storm motion than showing on radar. So, rather than us about to exit the core we actually
were about to enter it! That's an important lesson for using this as a tool in tight situations. I
think the images may be as old as 10 minutes. I'm thinking perhaps there is a lag between real world
measurement and the time the NWS signal actually arrives and gets processed to display by Wxworx -
say up to 6 minutes. Next there is the amount of time the image is stale or since the last radar
download and update - up to another 6 minutes. If you consider 10 minutes with a storm moving at
30mph, ten minutes is 1/6 of an hour and 1/6 of 30miles would be 5 miles. Perhaps the storm is
moving 40 or 45mph. That means that the radar you are navigating by may be offset in the direction
of storm movement and propagation by 5 miles or maybe even more. To be safe and not punch a core or
drive into a possible tornado you need to factor this in and give it that much space for error - in
my opinion. I'd love to hear from the rest of you on this topic, and your opinion about the accuracy
of wxworx for navigation.

As Gene and I began to see the sky lightening to the east, Gene took note of very active CG strikes
to our south. The implication was this was a tornadic area nearing us. As we emerged to the east
(just west of the town of Luella) we could look back and see a very large wallcloud lowering veiled
in precipitation to our southwest (out the right rear of the vehicle). It was a bit hard to judge
distance as we were under the anvil making it dark, and the precip was a complication. I'd say it
was about 2 to 3 miles distant. Sam, I saw your images of the same storm I believe from the south.
What we saw looked nothing like that as your images don't show a lowered wallcloud area like this. I
think you were either further south of this occurred further east of your earlier position. Anyway,
for a few moments there was concern for having speed and roads for outrunning what was potentially
developing; however this turned out to be no issue as we broke southeast on hwy 11 toward the town
of White Mound. We continued on toward Whitewright trying to get a good observation area. Somewhere
along the way it was decided that it appeared at this point too outflow dominant to be a good
target. We began to head for the storm nearing Paris. Somewhere along the way Wxworx flagged it as
tornadically warned. We continued from Gober along FM68 to hwy 34 and then north to Honey Grove.
There we caught hwy 82 on to Paris. Ah, if we could have just stayed on hwy 56/82 all along we would
have had the position and visibility we desired. That bridge which was out had cost us. By the time
we got to Paris the warning was somewhat stale, and I figured any possible tornadoes were long gone.

We worked our way through town and exited to the east. The area which wxworx indicated as a
mesocyclone was now still fairly far out ahead of us to the northeast. The area appeared to have the
look of cold outflow. However we continued to watch and for a few brief moments an area of
circulation had a clearly defined wide cone shaped funnel halfway to the ground. We started to get
out our cameras for a shot, and then it started to dissipate. We blew it off. It was getting late
and more cores / storms approaching to our south and west. We were pretty much out of daylight to
chase.

>From here on our way back from Paris to Sulpher Springs along hwy 19 the cores continued to descend
on us. According to Wxworx we were just outside of the rain area, but reality showed we were still
in the storm and the heavier stuff was just to our west. I hurried to try and beat the worst of it
but we still hit a lot of heavy rain. As we were approaching Sulpher Springs Gene recanted an old
tale of his Sulphur Springs nemesis tornado which almost ate him long ago as he emerged west from
the core over town. This is a fairly hair raising story if you ever hear it from him. I took the
loop around to the east of town and as I neared the south end of the loop and the south road option
I thought I saw a ground flash of bluish green amid all the constant CG and inter-cloud lightning
occurring to the SSW of town or directly to our SW. This is also the area where Wxworx was showing
meso's or whatever those whirly areas of rotation indicate. Heading south on 154 due south of town
was interesting again as the area out the front right of the vehicle appeared to have a large
bulbous lowering very close that was constantly illuminated with lightning. Winds were shifting
directions and I remember a hat or paper plate near the ground on the road lofting straight up into
the trees above. These were odd winds indeed. As we continued south the lowered area neared the road
and we were almost under it, but directly to its side as we passed it finally. I had to go around a
lot of slow moving vehicles doing 40 to 45mph that seemed stunned by all the weather activity.

The rest of the trip home to Austin was uneventful - except I was so tired trying to stay awake. We
watched the storm on Wxworx south of DFW that appeared so large and should have been feeding on that
250mb jet and the highest Capes of the day.

All in all this was a fun and enjoyable chase. We didn't score a tube, but then again no one I am
aware of did except the low dewpoint landspout chasers and that's a whole other deal. I have my
doubts about Bartlesville as reports have whatever it was as rain-wrapped. However that location is
near our secondary target of Tulsa which I remember models showing having some slightly backed
surface winds so there is that. It was a good day to drive around in core's and play with the new
toys and see what they can do. Not a bust as we caught supercells with wind, rain, hail cores,
funnel clouds, wallclouds, lightning, etc. Hopefully the next system will be a little cleaner
though. I think had we had the backed surface and 850mb winds or a good boundary to work with we
could have seen large tornadoes.
 
Rather than having to chase this system into East TX as I had with the previous two dryline events, I was blessed with watching it all coalesce directly overhead from the Vines H.S. parking lot in Plano starting at 4:15 pm after work.
Within the first 1/2 hour, an impressive anvil took shape overhead as dark clouds attempted to coalesce below. After about 25 minutes, and suddenly in about a 10 minute span, lower level clouds gathered, thickened and coalesced while tops began to ascend. Our first prec. was pea hail rather than rain, and curiously with almost no lightning.
Eventually this was replaced with bursts of gigantic raindrops.
The NWS called a warning on this "storm" all the way from Irving to north of Plano, a distance of about 40 miles.
Aware of the tornado watch and visually seeing the spectacular shear to the cloud directions with height, I kept close eye for anything lowering and rotating, and was well positioned immediately south of the line of separate developing cells.
Only once and briefly, rotation appeared within 1.5 miles to my north, as clouds lowered there and briefly spun cyclonically in slow motion.
The cloud structures and contrasts were most thrilling with black clouds against deep blue sky, and later various layers of massive white and gray cauliflower converging directly overhead.
The storm that developed overhead pressed into the north with a profoundly beautiful tower that I would estimate was 45K feet, which dwarfed all the other spectacular thunderheads and anvils that converged upon the departing storm. Though it did not have the knuckle-like hardness of especially powerful supercells, it was still spectacular, cauliflowery and had a massive wall of hail virgae drooping down from about 4/5 of the way to it's top.
About 6 pm, I persued another warned storm that hit Dallas with golfball hail and was moving NE to pass just E. of my location. Curiously, once again, despite the charcoal gray sky within 5 miles of me there was only one discharge of visible lightning. I arrived in Garland just after the storm passed, to find the ground peppered with hailstones up to 1/2 dollar size.
I learned how hail is like snow; no two stones alike and patterns varied in the stones from spray paint-like cream balls, to cat's eye marbles to agates.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Back
Top