FCST: 12 Mar 6 Eastern KS

March 12, 2006 by
Filed under: Forecast 

Today’s potential setup reminds me in some ways of 8 May 3, especially at the sfc, with the warm front retreating N across eastern KS, a vigorous dryline moving E across central/ern KS and central OK upon which storms should fire and quickly become supercells, deep-layer shear so extreme as to be almost *too* strong…and outrageous Warp 4 storm motions that would make the engineers of the Starship Enterprise green with envy. I recall elke and I seeing the second of our couple of tornadoes that day (at LWC) with a formerly robust supercell that, by then, had withered to a skinny and strongly tilted TCu with no anvil and the tornado comprising almost the entire updraft.

SFC analysis shows two warm frontal areas — one moving N across the KS border from PC eastward to MO, one along a GBD-EMP-AIZ line that should merge with the southern warn front later today as the latter moves N. I-70 looks like a reasonable position for the resulting front later this afternoon, say between 22-0Z. Early sfc-based storms may go along the dryline near the sfc low (as on 8 May), get intense really fast, maybe even drop a tube before quickly roaring across the warm front and into oblivion. The more confident play may be for dryline storms forming S of the triple point in the Newton-PNC corridor (or just E of there in the western Flint Hills) and racing NE to tornadic maturity from there. Expect 2000-2500 J/kg sfc-based CAPE (in my area of interest).

Uncertainty for CI diminishes with Nward extent up the dryline toward the triple point because of the proximity to strongest pressure falls and accordingly backed (and convergent) flow. Obviously capping becomes a concern into OK with the EML-from-hell. That said, it would not surprise me *at all* for a rogue supercell or two to fire down the dryline *somewhere* between PNC-ADM, move ENE at, say, *only* warp 2 or 3, and produce a 200 or more mile long string of severe reports per storm, streaking NE into AR and southern MO. Want to make that play? As Clint Eastwood once asked, “Are you feeling lucky”? If the answer is “yes” or even “damn straight I am,” then set up somewhere in EC-NE OK to bullfight such a storm as it matures into tornadic phase.

RLT and I are likely to head through TUL toward SE KS and go from there. The area from CNU-EMP-Ottawa looks really interesting, ahead of what could be a dryline bulge/surge (nose of “dry punch”).

The question today on tornadoes (even SIG tornadoes) is not if, but where and when. It will take mighty good strategy, and maybe a dollop of luck, to be in optimal viewing position given the blistering translational speeds to be attained by storms today.



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