Friday, May 8, 2009

A Stormy Night

A cold front moved southeast through the area overnight. Yesterday started out overcast, but the clouds all but cleared out and provided some good daytime heating, effectively cooking the atmosphere making conditions prime for thunderstorm development. By 4:00 p.m. two supercell storms formed in northeast MO and slowly made their way southeast. These two storms started off strong, spawning large hail reports and one tornado report in Daviess in NW Missouri. As the storms marched forward, they didn't let up, bringing numerous hail reports along the way. Finally, at 11:15 p.m., they reached our area.

Check out this impressive storm. You can see from the storm reports the path this storm took on its long journey. It was a well-organized supercell!

The strongest of the storm clipped us as it passed just to the south of this station. One spotter 3 miles south of Fulton reported 72 mph wind and 1/2" of rain in 15 minutes. We received only 0.36", lots of lightning, and for a time period of about 10 seconds we got rice-sized hail at 11:24. It occurred along with the heaviest rain. We didn't have any strong wind to report.

As the storm approached us, we were greeted with a spectacular lightning display! I got out our digital camera and tried my best to snap some pictures of the show. At times, the lightning would begin at the base of the clouds and sprawl out upwards and began as a "sunset orange" color. Here are some pics I was able to get. Most of them were very fuzzy, so they don't do the lightning justice. It was simply amazing.

The Morning After

As I left for work this morning, the sky was mostly clear with some high clouds left over from the night's storms. Before the next complex of storms rolled through the area, we were able to enjoy another beautiful sunrise. I'll never get tired of these.

Today's complex of storms brought some moderate rain to the area and some lightning, but nothing severe. Read Chris' CoCoRaHS blog for more on the storm that affected Southwest Missouri this morning.


Ami said...

I love watching lightening! Good job trying to capture it. They can be a little tricky to photograph.

The sunrise was beautiful. I mean from your pictures...I didn't see it in real life. I took my kids up to Doug's in the middle of the night so we were in a safer building while the tornado sirens were going off. He was working and called me to suggest I do that. So I was trying to get every minute of sleep I could get this morning!

Can't wait to get my pictures online so I can show you the creek rolling behind us.

Bob said...

I was thinking about your area when I heard and saw what went through MO - glad all is well. :)

Ami said...

Here is a link to storm damage information from the National Weather Service (thanks WxWatcher for teaching me the marvels of that website!) They will be updating the page as more information becomes available, and the damage is more thoroughly assessed.

Have a good weekend everyone!

OSNW3 said...

I agree with you WxWatcher, it was quite impressive. Since then you've been continually getting soaked, am I right? I've got the US radar loop if you're interested. Nice attempts at getting the lightning! I've only been successful once and only by video. So, was this a "50 year" storm or is it just another May storm?

I just checked your CoCoRaHS, looks like you're outta town this weekend, eh?!

Oh yeah, did the hail really look like rice?!

WxWatcher said...

Thanks for the link Ami! Hope you had a good mother's day.

Thanks Bob! I am too. I have always loved storms, but since I've started a family, my feelings on severe storms are mixed now. There was baseball sized hail in the region, so I'm glad I don't have to call my insurance company today!!

OSNW3, we got over an inch of rain Thursday and Friday. Could be much worse...the rain is relentless for the poor people in Southern MO and Arkansas.

I would love a loop of the storm if you have it!

As far as the storm being a 50 year storm -- I'd have to say no. Definitely not for us, and although it was a strong MCC in southern MO, it is not unusual for May. I can remember not that long ago tornado outbreaks that surpass last week's event in magnitude.

And the hail did look like rice. Not the good stuff you get at the restaurants...more like the Wal-Mart brand rice. J/K :)
Yeah, it was mostly smaller than pea sized hail, but it was tough to call it rice-sized, but I went with rice anyway. And I could have literally counted them as they fell because it was so light.

More storms on the way for Wednesday! They're already putting us under a moderate risk.