Sunday 22 May 2016

TX Panhandle


Some days are good, others not so good - and today was one of those days. We left Garden City (KS) with a lunch target of Dumas (TX) where we'd reassess the situation and nudge accordingly. After lunch, given that the environment was uncapped and hazy, convection was already bubbling-away and developing nicely. A dryline bulge had developed west of Lubbock, in theory providing the lift required for storm initiation - in reality, very little developed over W TX on the dryline and it was primarily focussed on a N-S line much farther east in the eastern Panhandle.

Storms developed quickly here and became severe in no time, so after driving down to Canyon (TX) we quickly headed east to intercept a line of developing supercells, some exhibiting better rotation than others. We found ourselves chasing the southernmost cell which became more-or-less stationary close to Lakeview (TX), It had good, fast rotation at times, but quickly became rain-wrapped before allegedly dropping a tornado. We were slammed by RFD wind / rain / hail which made us a little on edge for a while, and once we managed to get out from under the storm, it became a race to move west to avoid a whole line of thunderstorms that were now developing overhead, with the threat of large hail.

Annoyingly, several other thunderstorms in TX (and KS etc) produced some tornadoes, but alas ours was too HP to see anything that may have briefly formed. Always tomorrow...

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