Back to 'Days' Page
>>  Neal Rasmussen's On-line Chase Documentation   <<

                                                          May 3rd, 2001
                                       Morton, TX to Littlefield, TX
 
   "No, it hit MY house!"
   Time: from TC
   Location: 

The two farmers were probably arguing for days on whose house it hit, when in fact, it looks like it got two 'things' with the same stroke. Can these step leaders, the branch on the left,  that don't carry the full charge, kill you? I'm thinking yes, at least once.

 
   "Staccato CG!"
   Time: from TC
   Location: 

These "Staccato Cloud to Ground" strokes are unique in that they are "positive"  in charge, in that the ground is positively charged before strike. They can be identified visually in the fact that only a single powerful stroke happens, rather than multiple strikes in which you can see several channels flash to ground repeatedly. These single event strokes are VERY powerful in amperage, and are most always very branched and even 'fuzzy' looking. They often come out of the storm in the mostly rain free air ahead of tornadic circulations, the 'mesocylone' seen on doppler, much to the dismay of spotters and chasers, and cows. In addition, these Staccato strokes often times have a very periodic nature, cycling from 15 seconds to one minute, however, many tornadic storms are observed with no Staccato CG's.

 
 Timelapse of "Lucy" on dirt road, screaming towards "Golf 4" as it was
  known on the SkyWarn/HAM net. Only has last spark from above.
  Guess the other one got compressed out?
   Time: 30X : 
   Location: 
Large - 1062k - (5.9 minutes @ 56kb)
Small - 555k - (3.0 minutes @ 56kb)
Actually, Lucy was only going 40 mph on the dirt road, but at 30X compression, that's 1,200 mph! :-)

 
 Timelapse of early HP wrap!
   Time: 30X : 
   Location: 
Large - 845k - (4.7 minutes @ 56kb)
Small - 442k - (2.5 minutes @ 56kb)

 
   Lifting scud
   Time: App 8PM
   Location: 5 mi north of Morton, TX
I stupidly interrupted this timelapse as I saw gustnadoes, behind me to my southeast. Too late, I realized these were NOT typical gustnadoes, as while there was a long arc of dust to my southeast, indicating an outflow boundry, these dust devils were inside the ring. In addition, the wind was from the southeast and strengthening and the dust devils were moving towards this updraft in the timelapse. If I had left the video camera alone, it would have captured these whirlies all streaming off for this updraft! Doh!

Then the idea struck me that these were not gustnadoes! They were "Inflownadoes"! :-)
 


 
 Timelapse of above lifting scud!
   Time: 30X : 
   Location: 
Large - 2721k - (15 minutes @ 56kb)
Small - 442k - (2.5 minutes @ 56kb)

 
   After the Inflownadoes
   Time: from TC
   Location: 5 mi north of Morton, TX

One can see that the shear of this updraft is getting more and more symertrical and now
displays rotational aspects, as seen in the timelapse below.
 

 
 Timelapse of circulation becoming more rotational!
   Time: 30X : 
   Location: 
Large - 692k - (3.8 minutes @ 56kb)
Small - 362k - (2.0 minutes @ 56kb)

 
   Another RFD comes in.
   Time: from TC
   Location: 5 mi north of Morton, TX

The timelapse for this one shows how the core filled RFD is swinging around. Several of the questionable dark lowerings on the wall clouds inside these HP cells, were only visible on video, but not visually! :-(   Hmmmm "Tornado indicated by video."?

 
 Timelapse of HP Wall Cloud!
   Time: 30X : 
   Location: 
Large - 178k - (1.0 minute @ 56kb)
Small - 94k - (30 seconds @ 56kb)

 
   Spark from inside the Rear Flank Downdraft
   Time: from TC
   Location: 5 mi north of Morton, TX
 

 
   Littlefield, TX could be in trouble shortly!  :-(
   Time: from TC
   Location: Southeast side of Littlefield, TX

This lowering was getting more blockish all the time. This reformed after an RFD push gusted out and then recovered to back on the northwest part of the comma. This happened repeatedly on this day.
 

 
   Littlefield, TX could REALLY be in trouble shortly!  :-(
   Time: from TC
   Location: Southeast side of Littlefield, TX

The cattle seemed uninterested in the rain wrapped lowering, which was looking more funnel-like all the time. But then I saw hint of an outflow push so I zoomed out to shot the timelapse below. It is a nice example of an updraft being "undercut" by outflow from the rain/hail core.
 

 
 Timelapse of Undercut Updraft! Must see MPG for spotters!
   Time: 30X : 
   Location: 
Large - 473k - (2.6 minutes @ 56kb)