Storm Chase Day #6: Predictions

The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has issued a Slight Risk for a stripe of the High Plains.

Associated with this risk is a thin, long, 2% Tornado Threat Ring.

The surface map shows a moderate south and southeasterly breeze, morning temperatures in the 60s F, with dewpoints in the upper 50s F, but cloudy skies over most of the threat region. Winds are still from the southeast, advecting more moisture into the area.

The visible satellite imagery shows cloud cover over the target area. The satellite loop shows gradual clearing, particularly in southwestern Kansas.

The HRRR has a dryline bulge in the early afternoon over west-central Kansas. Otherwise, there is plenty of moisture on the humid side of the dryline, with dewpoints in the mid 60s F.

The 12 Z sounding from Dodge City, KS, shows a saturated atmosphere, with only a little Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE), with just a small capping inversion. I expect the CAPE to increase throughout the day. Also, the deep layer shear is a little weak, but at least it has some directional component to it.

I checked the Amarillo, TX, sounding as well, but it looks more capped, though there is already a lot more CAPE.

Speaking of CAPE, there is a surface-based CAPE max near I-70 in west-central Kansas.

There is a surface vorticity maxima as well.

As expected from this data, the Supercell Parameter was at a maximum here as well.

Just for fun, I pulled up the simulated reflectivity for the HRRR. A few storms may fire as a cluster in this area, so it may be pulling the “tail-end charlie” cell again today.

I am targeting somewhere near Sharon Springs, KS for now. I will do some nowcasting on the road, but this looks like a good starting point. The skies are beginning to clear, and there is CAPE and shear there. The dryline looks like it may bulge nearby, so all of the ingredients are there.

Thank you for reading my post.

The forecasts from the National Weather Service are from The NWS Homepage. The upper air soundings and mesoscale analysis plots are from the Storm Prediction Center website. The satellite data, model data, and forecasted soundings are from College of DuPage – SATRAD

About highplainschasing

This blog is about my tales in storm chasing. My name is Seth Price and I am an instrumentation instructor at New Mexico Tech. My amateur radio call sign is N3MRA.
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