"But seeing they could not See; hearing they could not Hear"
“The views expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the National Weather Service or affiliate/related organizations. Please consult .gov sites for official information”

"From its chamber comes the whirlwind, and cold from the scattering winds." - Job 37:9.

"The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning on its course".

Wednesday, August 5, 2009


Just got back from Merritt Island and had the opportunity to see an attempt at an attempted act. I took more pix while crossing the rivers but accidentally reformatted the Memory Stick while in the process of shooting these, so those pix are lost. In any case, I wasn't hoping for anything more than a small funnel. Mostly just putting these pix up to show those from not around here what this initial seabreeze stuff looks like. The pictures I lost definitely showed better structure though from a slightly greater distance.
As a forecast update, things are starting to look a tad flaky. This early onset of coastal convection combined with activity that has already worked half way across the state might spread anvil debris this way by 4:30pm. At time, though, it looks like that won't be an issue. The other fly in the ointment is that a bounary from SE Florida seems to be racing fairly rapidly NW toward the west coast seabreeze. When the collision occurs it could be as early as 4:00pm...however, if it collides far enough to the west and southwest it may be of little impact to the immediate east coast. Actually, it could set off an outflow boundary back to the coast after 6:00pm. Gotta love the evoluation of the chaos.

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As expected, an update is minimally required. Sounding this morning from TPA looks similar to yesterday morning. All things considered, it looks better than last nights but (again) similar to the morning's yesterday. So what I need to do is copy and paste my forecast for yesterday into can read that. :-) Seriously though, if you read Tuesday's discussion further down it says it all.
The only thing really different from my earlier post for today is that there is yet another remnant vorticity max. coming down off the Florida Panhandle just like yesterday which adds another element of surprise into this afternoon's casserole. :-0

Perhaps, things will be closer to the coast then previously expected. Of course, yesterday I thought that under these circumstances something strong would possibly hit the coast in the strongest of storms, but that never materialized; however, today is a different day, and in today's case there's no guarantees either pro or con. This means one can be either disappointed or glad, depending on whether one wants it to rain or not.

(Off the Cuff: Models this season have continuously been seemingly 2-5 days ahead of themselves in the mid-long term forecasts, and even day to day changes in the short-term have been a smidge above being merely cosmetic in nature. Prime example is this past spring when the Death Ridge over the Plains was supposed to lift out during Vortex2's Romp on the Plains and it took a good 1 1/2 months for that to happen when data kept implying it would take no longer than 1 week.) Locally, our "East Coast of Florida Death Ridge" was supposed to have been in play initially a week ago shutting our convection down east of I-95, yet the ridge axis continues to fall short of shifting north beyond a Cape to Brooksville axis. Seems these short waves and nocturnal MCS impulses over the Plains and into the MidWest which are riding down the back of that stubbon upper level Hudson Bay low just prevent the trough from lifting out in totality. Much to this writer's glee.

BACK TO TODAY: Local analysis using LDIS (the link is off to the right in the 'Oft Used Links' column) actually shows some increased moisture over East Central Florida from earlier this morning in the Average Steering Flow/Moisture composite. I take this simply as verification that nothing much has really changed and that the environment is simply readjusting from last nights activity. I noticed that yesterday we also were a moisture bulls-eye shortly before initiation, but nothing actually happened that's a "take it for what it's worth".

But for what it is worth, I'm pretty happy with today's sounding. It couldn't quite do what it looked like it would do yesterday...doesn't mean something more won't transpire today. Looks overall like 2-4 strong storms in Central Florida (maybe some will warrant a severe warning). The most likely guarantee will again be heavy rainfall in the blessed locales due to slow and eratic storm motion. Hope my rain gauge will be one of the blessed today :)

Maybe it will be a Manatee Park Chase Day, but definitely not hanging my hat on that one. Preferably I'd like that most not because of reduced driving, but the best looking storms are inevitably right on the coast as the gust front and remanent updrafts pass over the warm intercoastal waterways which stand upright against the seabreeze in the lowest 5000 feet.

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Can't stand it any longer. Decided to go ahead and post some early-in-the-day forecast musings. Based on current RUC trends, last night's NAM and GFS, water vapor loops, and surface observations... today doesn't look much different than yesterday. Inevitably, an update to this discussion will be required after sounding data becomes available. Namely to see what Tampa's (TPA) mid-upper level temps. & winds reveal. Otherwise, there are no triggers detectable, which means we'll have to depend on the usual. Like yesterday, storm motion will be determined by how far inland the seabreeze (SB) will march before convective onset in conjunction with outflow boundary (OFB) interactions and propogation along said forth. What this all means is that motion will be unpredictable at best with highest concentration west of the east coast seabreeze in Volusia, Orange, Osceola, and Lake Counties. Any storm that actually makes it to the coast after 5pm will do it based on outflow from earlier activity as steering ALONE is too weak to fight the seabreeze. In these cases, without some outside help, whatever reaches the coast would be light rain and some anvil lightning (generally...debris) .
In this musing, I'm learning that one can't compare what the previous day did here (in THIS summer setup) even if the soundings are similar. Namely because the aforementioned collisions and undetectable microscale parameters that mother nature has up her sleeve leaves the affects of collisions or even initial shower/storm development a unique "experience" each and every time they happen (even within one day). This can vary from having possible funnels/spouts along the coast and intercoastal before or during full bore seabreeze initiation (which is possible today suppositioning there will be very weak winds aloft which is going to be a given) to the result of outflow collisions (assuming there will be more than 2 storms within 50 miles off each other). Combine them all and what you end up with is a mish-mash slop fest if there is too much a good thing. Thus, I try to get to not the first storm of the day (unless it's very nearby)..but rather wait until after a few have gone up (but not's that for being vague?). BUT NOTE: Not all summer setups are the same just like no two days within a given setup are the same.

As of this writing (now 7:40am) a deck of stratocumulus has suddenly materialize which may be indicative of residual midlevel moisture (which is shown by all the models to be in place). They also show this moisture to dissipate by 2:00pm today at all levels which actually could be a good thing for later photo opportunities. This residual stuff often leaves around too many clouds during shower/storm formative stages for good structure shots.

In Summary: We will have CAPE today with decent LIs, seabreeze convergence from both coasts, ample moisture..thus, it's summer in Florida. Best bet is going to be right down and west of I-95 after 3pm, not to discount the possiblity that something flooky (such as a funnel) could occur east of US1 before that time. Storm strength before 3pm should be weak with little to be seen structure wise, even if one does produce a funnel.
Update to follow upon latest data availability.

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Wednesday, August 5

Made my first post just 10 minutes ago and still trying to get the feel of this Blogger, so things should improve with time. The photos above and to the left are from Monday in Cape Canaveral near the Manatee Park. Never posted any pictures from yesterday as there was nothing worth taking a photo of after driving into Osceola and Orange Counties. I got into stuff going thru Eastern Orange County after it suddenly shifted out of NW Brevard..but it was already in a rapid weakening phase. Originally was thinking of heading toward Kissimmee as that's where a 4 way collision was imminent..but opted not to because it was too far, time of day/traffic/location, etc...and visual clues showed that newer stuff was going up south of the northern stuff. On radar it looks like movement, but in reality it was propogation. Just noticed that the NWS was surprised there were no Storm Reports from yesterday considering how radar looked. My guess is that anything reportable probably occurred where few folks live (if that's possible around here...LOL). But the stuff I was on was about the strongest at the time I was on the road based on radar loops upon returning home from Wx-Tap. The worst happened over the St John River Valley Basin in NW Brevard County west of Titusville which in layman's terms is defined as "swampland" and in another cluster along the Indian River/Osceola/Brevard County Intersection...which in layman's terms is "no man's land".
For now, though, I went ahead and posted some photos from Monday, August 3 taken in Cape Canaveral near the Manatee Park off A1A. Today's forecast will be posted later this morning after "currenter" (if that's a word) data becomes available as it's only 4:30am at time.

From last nights data though, today looks about the same as yesterday with ever so subtle differences as you'd expect since no 2 days are exactly the same. The sig change seems to be coming beginning later Thursday as ridging develops at all levels leaving us in an onshore flow regime with 0 thunderstorms on the immediate coast.

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Tuesday, August 4

I've hemmed and hawed at what I can see on data so far, neglecting almost totally the forecasted precip. portions of the models. Basically all that was required was the TPA sounding and latest water vapor loop which was beneficial for sure. In fact, after watching it my hopes are probably unduly hopeful.

Number 1: temps aloft are a tad cooler today with something funky at 700mb, and 2: there seems to be something embedded in the vapor loop that's being forced SE off the GOM FL Panhandle coast rapidly moving toward TPAs area of responsibility. No AFDs are alluding to either though. But it sure seems to me that the activity over in the eastern GOM right now is indicative of what may enter MLBs fcst arena later (albeit it's meager, but there was nothing there yesterday at this time).

If it is real, it might be what's needed to give anything that develops an eastward nudge against the seabreeze coz it's going to need it today with those winds aloft of 10kts or less (less than yesterday).

So all things included, today looks like stronger storms and even slower motion. Once stuff goes up...and assuming there will be at least 3 storms within 50 miles of each other by 4:30pm..motion will be almost solely dictated upon c-breeze/lake breeze/outflow boundaries and propagation along said forth. In other words, unpredictable at best (can it be any worse?)

Another fly before being done for now, is what will happen in Part 1 of the day? With the lighter winds, more than sufficient moisture, and recycled there the possibility of an actual funnel along the coastal waters before 2pm?
Looking at the sky right now it's hard to even consider it ...I's absolutely clear right now without a speck of cloud and it's 10:30am.

We'll know sure enough I guess. I hope I don't have to go anywhere today...and maybe there'll be no reason to if nothing fires which I originally thought would be the case...but clearly I'm leaning away from that now despite what the models are depicting. So what it all amounts to is this.."another summer day in Central Florida...roll the dice..."


With a little luck, managed to create a "diary" of yesterday's storm evolution...from initial Cu development during c-breeze onset at 12 noon, to TCu at 1:52pm as the c-breeze began it's westward march, and eventually CB at 5:15pm with a very typical Florida Gust Front appended as the storm crawled back SE across the intercoastal waterways toward the coast. Saved some satellite/radar imagery to accompany the time/date stamped photos to complete the package.

There was actually a severe issued at the time of the photo adventure, but not for this storm. The warning was for a storm behind this one which I couldn't even see. After taking the pix, I came home and watched the fun transpire on Wx-Tap watching multiple boundary(s) collisions [multiple stressed :-)] and cell propagation along boundaries and the c-breeze. Was tempted to hit the road again to head inland but figured that relatively short storm life, and by that time cloud cover/structural integrity inland, precluded the feasibility of vying for that option. as tempting as it was.

If interested you can see the pics. I only uploaded two other pix (of the many I took) from yesterday accessible to the right of the one that will pop up under "Weather and Storm Photographs (set):

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