Thursday, April 22, 2010

Tornado season is upon us

Some quick facts. Today marked the latest day in the year where a moderate risk of severe weather was forecast by SPC. Interesting enough, the MOD risk was not forecast until the 20 UTC update.

Overall, the NSSL WRF model did pretty well from what I can see. It was spotty and sluggish but the put the idea out there that small scale convection was possible.

The result: 31 local storm report tornadoes.

The hodographs were nicely curved today and the moisture got into eastern Colorado. The low level cloud cover kept dew point depressions low (low lcl heights) near the warm front. There were a number of splitting supercells in very close proximity to other supercells which did not split. At the very least, my perception tells me they were supercells but it is possible that supercells were not the only organizational mode out there today.

I dont know what to make of the deep low level cloud layer at OUN. The OKC ASOS showed the overcast skies but did not that much moisture really pour into Oklahoma today? Preliminary analysis says yes since FWD reported similar low level moisture observations almost of the tropical variety.

In fact, in searching through the soundings, the elevated mixed layer was surprisingly far south in Brownsville and still weak in DRT. Not really sure what to make of that factoid. Then again I wasnt following this event very closely.

anyway, here are the pics. Wish I was out there chasing. The Plains of Colorado is some nice empty country.