Tuesday, May 13, 2014

5/11/2014 Southeast Nebraska HP Supercell

Skip Talbot, Jennifer Brindley Ubl, and I ventured out to the plains early Sunday morning to setup for an enhanced risk of tornadic supercells along an east to west oriented warm front in southeast Nebraska.  A moderate risk was already in place due to the outstanding forecast hodographs.

Setup perspective via visible satellite and mesoanalysis 
One potential pitfall of this setup was the lack of steep low-level lapse rates, as exhibited by the morning RAOBS.  Nevertheless, we latched on to a rapidly developing supercell north of Hebron as it quickly produced a large (but brief!) multi-vortex tornado.  We could only see the tornado because of our position in the notch.  Despite the difficult storm motion and HP nature of the storm, I never felt at risk of being overtaken because of our very cautious nature.  We quickly got in and out of that area only stopping for a few moments to peek into the bear's cage.  It was a tough chase, indeed, with poor visibility, crappy road conditions, and less-than-ideal cell data service.

The storm was north of the warm front for most of its lifecycle, constantly breathing on air that was chilled from the morning convective outflow.  It did make several attempts to surge toward the boundary, but could never quite latch on and make a right turn.  I have a feeling we would have had a violent, long-track tornado on our hands if that storm could have made a good connection to the WF.

Brief cone tornado (right center) and what appears to be a large wedge tornado (left center)
Skip and I discussing storm structure
Initial large multi-vortex circulation with brief tornadoes
Check out more pictures over on Jen's BLOG.

Good to be back in chase mode.

Large rain-wrapped circulation along I-80 just southwest of Lincoln, NE
What was left of the circulation as it passed over Lincoln

Time lapse of the day

No comments: