April 6 2010 Storm Chase – Central Oklahoma

Forecast/Setup –

Risk Area: Slight Risk
Initial Target Area: El Reno, Oklahoma

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A medium wavelength trof was progged to traverse eastward through the southern plains. Multiple deep Gulf intrusions had occurred during much in a response to a very active southern jet stream. While moisture return was expected to be modest at best, enough moisture could make it back for storms today. Unfortunately this ended up not being the case as a very strong cap developed due to persistent southwesterly flow aloft and the upper system being a little farther north of Oklahoma. While the cap was strong, surface moisture also mixed out, lowering CAPE values across much of the region. The best region for storms was already narrow due to modest moisture return. While isolated storms attempted to develop, there was a little success until the squall line developed by mid-evening.

The Chase –

Team 1 – Rob Ferguson, Brett LaBare, and Putnam Reiter
Miles Driven – 50 – Gas spent $7.00
Departure Time – 16:00 CDT
Return Time – 19:30 CDT

We left Oklahoma City and headed west on I-40 to El Reno around 15:45 CDT. We got to El Reno and stopped by Walmart to get a cig splitter (always need more power). Got some fuel and food, as it was around 17:00. We sat in El Reno for several hours and watched cumulus to our southwest. A few became towering cumulus, but eventually all attempts ceased. Seeing that the chance for isolated development was gone, we drove back to OKC and awaited the expected squall line.

Rob and Brett headed north as the squall line was developing. They decided to go north on I-35 to Seward Road and see what headed their direction. As they started north, a discrete storm had developed and looked like a supercell. By the time they got there, the squall line had developed. They hung out there for a while and got plenty of lightning pictures. Eventually the squall line got close enough for them to leave and head back to the city.

Lessons Learned –

– Ironed out some kinks with the automation, so despite the bust we learned a little.

Multimedia –

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Encounters –

Engaged Storm: None
Tornado: No
Funnel: No
Hail (larger than 0.75 inches): No
Wall Cloud: No
Wind (above 57.4 mph): No

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