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5/19/04 FCST: NE/IA/KS/MO/MN


Looking like a high CAPE day is setting up over the Missouri River Valley. Could be big time depending on how the dynamical support sets up. Will be crucial to monitor. Areas of particular interest: Omaha and surrounding region.

The current day 3 (as of Monday) outlook is mentioning a possible active severe weather day on Wed. with long lived supercells with tornados,etc. Right now the area of interest is se Neb./ne Ks/ Nw Mo/sw Ia area:


Hope they clarify it a little more in Tuesdays outlooks since it influences travel plans for me if a chase is in the making- one days travel to that area for me.
Wednesday's setup certainly looks interesting across eastern Nebraska. The stationary front is forecast to remain so, but SBCAPEs will build from 2500-3000 J/kg along the eastern NE/KS border at 18Z to 4000+ over KOMA at 0Z. Although the afternoon looks fairly capped, the highest CAPE areas will be free of cap by 0Z. However, the helicity is not incredibly impressive, and looks to be the best east of the Missouri River. The best helicity is to be found in eastern Iowa, but given the low cape and strong cap, no significant convection is expected there. Once again, a VERY dry H5 and surface Tds around 75 (hope the A/C works) will combine to make LIs around -8 in the target area. If the early afternoon cap helps keep things from getting too messy, this could be a very good setup.

Good gracious - with CAPE near 6000 (!) I wouldn't be surprised if the boundary layer simply explodes upward and creates a colossal vacuum. :)

Tomorrow remains very interesting ... I may have to take the afternoon off for a jaunt to the great cornbelt.

Take a look at those other OAX parameters:

SWEAT: 574.6
LCL: 1101m
LFC: 1131m
LI: -8

Storm speeds around 27 kts ...
Well, I will be leaving MI about 4am headed west. The plan was to make it to Ness City by tomorrow night and then onto the in-laws on Thurs, but I've informed my wife that we may be making an extended stop in IA or NE. We will see how it progresses, but it's looking quite promising at this point.
I can't wait to see tomorrow morning's OAX SKEW-T's. The ETA 0z sounding Mike H. linked has all of the "Loaded Gun" characteristics. I think the Hwy 77 or 75 corridors in Nebraska (basically from Fremont north) are good places to start your late afternoons.

I'm starting to get that bad feeling that some unsuspecting little town in our area could have a very bad Wednesday. To take a line from the National Hurricane Center earlier today......."It's been too long."

Of course, we've seen hellacious conditions in the past this year, only to have one parameter in the equation peter out on us, and end up with marginal to bust-type days. Tonight and tommorow morning will tell this story.

Re-fuel the vehicles.....time for another ride.
WOW, tomorrow looks quite impressive right now.

The following ETA progs give me goosebumps :

A 2M DP of 75 with an LI of ~-8 in SW Iowa valid at 00z. Even an incredible high 19.7C 850mb dew in the same area. Also SBCAPE bullseye of ~5000 in the same area. Combine this with frontal dynamics and tomorrow could be quite a show! We'll see if the 0z models will continue to paint this type of picture tonight.
Don't let the MO river get you tomorrow. Think well ahead of yourself if you are in eastern NE. From n-s you can cross at Yankton, Vermillion(I think..didn't show it onthe map I had, but when up there on the NE side it had a road sign to Vermillion going north)Sioux City, Decatur(there is a toll for this bridge .75 I think) Blair(stay away from Blair), Omaha, Plattsmouth(another toll bridge), Nebraska City, Falls City(I might of missed one). It's actually a pain in the butt when you find yourself between these options with a good looking storm to your due west that you HAVE to leave for a bit. GPS and farm roads won't get you across the river. Good luck to anyone up here, unless you are IN Blair. Sort of hope it sets up in se SD north of the MO River.

The only one I see you missed was Brownville - near Auburn and Rock Port, MO. Just remember that there are mostly tolls from Belleview north and no tolls from there south (although the Rulo bridge is so scary, they should pay YOU to take it) :)
I actually stuck myself in Walnut, Iowa (just east of Omaha) as a pre-emptive strike for that reason. I'm overdue for a risk blowing up in my face, but I'd rather be too far east than west for this one.
Third time the charm? Well, after a bust in Kansas yesterday and being laughed at by the DCVZ today, I am going to try my luck with Iowa. I'm currently at home, going to take a shower and cash a surprise check that was awaiting me when I arrived then shoot up I-76 til I crash out (sleep, not literally bang). Tomorrow, I'll get up early to finish the trip, likely initially targeting the Lincoln area, then moving north and east from there. Figure I can get halfway tonight, then cover the rest tomorrow (500 miles to Lincoln from here) so at 70mph, I'm hoping to nuke out about 250 tonight and 250 tomorrow and go from there.

Once I get moving tomorrow, I'll hit a WiFi spot on I-80 or a library and make some final decisions. Going to be a marathon run tonight and tomorrow, so I'll see everyone tomorrow.
Wednesday = O'Neill Nebraska. 50knts west at 500mb atop not great low level flow but extreme instability. Watch out for those se moving sups wanting to back build and turn more south. Would be nice to get a few to turn more se. Option 2 could be western IA on nose of llj and any possible outflow boundaries and likely in better T/TD spreads. Kind of torn between the two at this time. Figure it out tomorrow. Good luck to all.

See what you are saying, Mike. I gotta go with the E NE/W IA target now with the better LLJ, 40 knot westerlies and divergence at 500mb and phenominal CAPES - for now. Nothing like a nice backyard chase.

This will be brief; as I must pack, eat dinner, do homework, attempt to get out of my morning shift at WWMT (for an EXTRA early KZO departure) and pick up my pending chase partners Chris Novy and Steve Jascourt tommarow morning.

I love the 0Z ETA runs; will not rehash it here, just look for yourself. Regardless of the veriying erray of factors, Ive been extreamly positive about Wednesday since last Friday/Saturday... and I will indeed be chasing (pulling a one day marathon from KZO to NE back to KZO then following work at 5:30am ET and class... oh yes, then work again for the midday shift... will pack, nap, and depart for Norman overnight Thursday... chase Friday; sleep in Norman; then will be starting Tempest Tours on Saturday)..... yes, I am crazy and that was a long run on sentence!

One negative; the cap -- but I feel there will be enough forcing to overcome this.

Target area/region: Columbus, Nebraska

Good luck to all those whom venture out/and or are already out!


Blake W. Naftel - KC8VPG
[email protected]
I see a dry punch working into north central Kansas coincident with high instabilites and favorable low level shear. I think dewpoints will pool east and northeast of this feature (and I can tell you from ICT tonight--there are plenty of dews to pool).

I'm looking from Salina up to Hastings. Hope the surface low actually makes an appearance unlike this afternoon when our winds relaxed and a mostly-eroded cap barely escaped without breaking.

I'll make for Concordia and check data again.

Good luck everybody.
The early afternoon appears shutoff by a fairly strong cap (exception: there is a narrow sliver of break along the Missouri River at 18Z), but by 0Z Eta forecasts the cap to be mostly gone over eastern Nebraska and the western two-thirds of Iowa. With surface-based CAPEs in excess of 5000 J/kg over parts of Nebraska, the entire eastern third of the state, as well as most of Iowa, look to be in good shape for a spectacular show. With LIs between -7 and -9, combined with the cold front moving through Nebraska, should provide ample incentive for upward motion. The chief concern again will be helicity values. Ahead of the front, there is good veering, but the weak speeds at 500 and 250mb are just a tiny bit troublesome. On the other hand, that means the storms won't be moving very fast.

I'll be leaving cedar rapids about 9am, probably heading towards the omaha area initially. If anyone is in the area, and wouldnt mind having a newbie tag along for some learing experience, that would be sweet. I'll check this forum on WiFi again once I arrive in Omaha, possibly before that. Or you can reach me at (319) 329 0276. I'll be driving a red F-150 with a big directional grid antenna sticking up in the bed, and some lights if anyone happens to see me. Hopefully my first out of state chase won't be too big of a bust.
My target this morning is Fremont, NE. Good highways in all directions between US77 & US30, and I believe it will be east of initiation. After looking at some data this morning, one word comes to mind......Explosive. Let's hope in one way that today IS the day for us, and NOT the day for some unsuspecting little town.
Well, after about six hours of driving I am sitting in Iowa City waiting for McDonalds to start serving lunch, lol. Can't eat breakfast at this time when you've been up for 7 hours.

We are headed west anyway, and it looks like we'll be going right through the bullseye (unless it's O'neill, lol).

Data is going to be slim as I head west for me, so if anyone wants to let me know of a more precise target, feel free to e-mail me. I can get to that from my phone, lol.

The ingredients are there, but is it going to cook up into something tasty? I'll eat anything :lol:

[email protected]

Hey from Grand Island! :)

After looking over data and talking with a couple other chasers, I am going to head to Lincoln, NE for the time being. This puts me on the southern fringe of SPC's hatched tornado probs and puts me in an area of clearing. This also gives me a chance to move north/south quickly.

Clouds and drizzle (AKA C-R-A-P) are blanketing the area right now, but after looking at the VIS, I see a pocket of clearing starting to erode the cloud layer over NE Kansas/N Missouri. I'm going to head to Lincoln hoping that clearing makes it in before lunch and starts to warm things. A lot of clouds and C-R-A-P are covering areas in the higher risk place, so I'll remain on the southern end til I see/hear something that tells me otherwise. Southwestern Iowa is also getting in on the action (in terms of clearing), so I really feel good about hanging along the I-80 cooridor for the time being.

Be safe out there, gang.. this looks like it has the potential to be a huge day across the area. With strong tornadoes possible, we're going to have to be on our toes. Be safe all!