Yesterday’s Chase

IMG_0855Not sure when I’m going to learn not to chase these nontraditional summer setups lol. Normally I don’t get suckered into chasing outside of the spring and fall season, but I didn’t get my fill of tornadoes this spring so I’ve been going out pretty much every chance I get. So00, despite the fact that yesterday’s setup was a cold front with strong forcing where LCL height were workable, Mikey got duped again.

I left for York, Nebraska at about 10:30 yesterday morning with the intention of forecasting there before moving in on my exact target. I stayed in York for about an hour and then moved east towards Omaha to get ahead of the cold front. Speaking of that, SPC seriously botched the location of their threat area yesterday. I was sitting there looking at surface charts and satellite wondering why in the hell they weren’t trimming off the west side of their threat area since the cold front had pushed through. For a few minutes it actually left me second guessing myself wondering if I was missing something lol. I still don’t understand why they had the tornado probs drug out all the way into central Nebraska. Anyway, I jumped on a tail end storm that developed by Omaha and tracked through just north of town. Above is a picture of the base as it tried to get organized NE of Omaha. It had decent structure for a bit, but it never could really get it’s act together. I stayed with this storm a few miles into Iowa until additional cells started developing off it’s SW flank. At that point I made a strategic decision to bail south for the storm developing by Beatrice. I knew that LCL heights were higher in SE Nebraska (surface temps were higher and there was a dry pocket of mid 60 dew points in the SE part of the state) and that would be a real limiting factor for any tornado potential, but I also knew that the convective mode/linear evolution of storms further north by Omaha was going to ruin the tornado potential up there.  So I decided my best bet was that there may be a window later in the day as LCL heights lowered for the more discrete storms farther south to produce so I bailed on the Omaha storm to head south. I caught the Beatrice storm right before it crossed into Kansas and stayed with it until an hour or so after dark as it moved into Manhattan. That storm started to show rotation for a  little while after dark and had a nice RFD notch by Randolph, KS, but it couldn’t ever get it done.

736 miles covered yesterday and not much to show for it lol. I didn’t get home until after midnight which kept me from going to the bar with friends and likely making an ass of myself so I guess I should consider it a good day. Although yesterday’s forecast was a total flop from a tornado standpoint (I don’t think there was even a warning in the entire country) I do think I did alright with my forecasting/targetting. I wasn’t that optimistic there would be tornadoes yesterday, but I knew if there were they’d likely be along the tail end near Omaha where convective mode was a little more favorable for tornadic storms. The HRRR was helpful in that regard as it did a pretty good job with simulated reflectivity on later runs (earlier runs yesterday were a shit show), but keeping a close eye on visible satellite and how the cu field was developing also was key. Convection unfolded about how I thought it would and I think had any storms been able to produce I would have been in the right area. Just couldn’t get it done though.

BTW for the handful of people that continue to look at my blog outside of chase season sorry for not posting much. I get lazy after having to post constantly from March-June, but now that hurricane season is getting started I’ll probably start posting a little more. That and fall tornado season is just around the corner so I’ll start watching the models again on that. Anyway, check back occasionally for posts or just follow me on twitter. I have my blog tied to my twitter account so it pops up on there whenever I post.

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