Heading Home from Kansas

Bill Oosterbaan, Steve Barclift, Rob Forry, and I have had a fun time chasing low-top supercells today in Minnesota on our way home from two action-packed days in Oklahoma and Kansas. Now, at the end of day three, we're heading east on I-94, with Minneapolis fresh behind our backs and seven hours of driving ahead of us. The four of us witnessed several tornadoes--how many, it's hard to say for sure, but we've agreed upon six--during yesterday's massive outbreak. We tangled unsuccessfully with two supercells before hitting paydirt with a storm that dropped a string of swirlies around Hesston, Goessels, and points beyond. And yes, I shot some decent video, which I'll post on YouTube once I've edited it, and also subsequently embed in a post here on Stormhorn.com. Consider this little placeholder to be a friendly heads-up that more is on the way in a day or two. Till then, ciao.

Faux Supercell: A Weird Radar Image

Three days ago, glancing idly at the national radar composite, I saw a bright patch of red in northwest Nebraska. I decided to take a closer look at it with

no images were found

GR3 and did a double-take. What the heck was it? Base level reflectivity showed what looked like a pronounced hook, but there was no indication of rotation on SRM and the cloud tops were only 10,000-15,000 feet. The storm was moving northwest toward the low, the way I've seen some low-top supercells do. I opened GR2AE in order to get better resolution, but it showed nothing particularly illuminating. I knew this thing couldn't be a supercell, but still... If I'd taken just a few seconds to pay attention to the surface obs, I wouldn't have had even a shadow of doubt, but that's not my style. I was just plain intrigued by this faux supercell, so I grabbed the images and tossed them onto a thread

no images were found

on Stormtrack, thinking that others might also find them interesting. After all, the storm looked about as supercellular as anything I've seen that wasn't actually a supercell--a camouflage act of sorts, kind of like certain harmless snakes whose color schemes mimic those of poisonous snakes. Jason Boggs wrote back to say he thought it was just a sleet storm. Then in pipes Rob Dale pointing out that surface obs showed temps in the low thirties and snow, with no lightning within 150 miles. Smarty pants. How did he know there wasn't a mile-wide snow wedge underneath that thing? There could have been. Well, there COULD have!

no images were found

Okay, there couldn't have, but it's fun to think about. Getting back to the point: I thought these were some cool images, noteworthy because of their mimicry. I figured that you might enjoy them too. Click on them to enlarge them.