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After being skunked a couple times by forecasts for local storms that didn't pan out, Today we have a bit of a surprise.  Shear was not especially great south of the warm front. However the best cape and weakest capping were occurring to the south, mostly south of Grand Rapids. Several vigorous updrafts formed early in the afternoon immediately along Lake Michigan. A small window existed where these new storms would stay discrete enough that they perhaps could generate an environment where tornadoes were more likely.  A mature storm formed over Ottawa county, and another, newer, much closer storm over Allegan county. We chose the Allegan county target.  Chased with my wife this time (really her first time on any serious storm hunt.) 

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We followed the storm to the Dumont lake area where we witnessed a nice clean rain-free base evolve to produce a boiling wall cloud. Rotation was weak but visible.  Later we followed the base a bit further north where the RFD began to really take hold of this storm, as well as precip from a storm to it's south that would eventually merge into our target storm.

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At the end of the day a QLCS emerged that was moving very slowly to the west. Giving us a chance to watch a shelf cloud ungulate in a nearly stationary position.  The downdraft was a deep green, while the updraft was smooth and fast--much faster than any perceived storm motion. This gave us time to make a great video of the shelf cloud and and a very-wide high-res panorama!
 


Comments

08/15/2015 5:36am

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I am currently taking up Meteorology in school. It really fascinates me how something that can be so destructive can also be so beautiful and full of life. I am always looking to learn more about storms and their unpredictable behavior. The "National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Weather" has really helped me understand the different forms weather. This post has also been informative. thank you!

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A mature storm shaped over Ottawa province, and another, fresher, much closer tempest over Allegan district. We picked the Allegan province target.

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Wow, that's beatiful. Great video!

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Storm is my passion!

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