After the success of the chase yesterday, Ryan and I were really pumped to get out and attempt another tornado catch. We left St. Louis early in the day and met Brian Stertz in Overland Park Kansas in the early afternoon. We opted to chase the Kansas target zone, Brian’s original forecast area. We were more than just a bit surprised when the Storm Prediction Center dropped a Severe Thunderstorm Watch (blue box) over the target area instead of the anticipated Tornado Watch (red box). This was definitely a sign of things to come.
We headed down I-35 to Emporia Kansas just as some hailers were moving in from the west. These looked like they were cold front storms/supercells. We decided to head south after some discussion with Jeff Piotrowski. The dryline-cold front intersection was near Wichita, so we figured this would be a likely spot where the cap could be more easily breached and maybe some lower LCL's. As additional severe thunderstorm warnings kept getting issued, we finally found what looked to be tail end charlie northwest of El Dorado Kansas where we stopped and watched things slowly back-build towards the Wichita area. We soon headed down that way. We reached Andover to watch things. A severe thunderstorm warning was issued for a rapidly developing supercell (tail end charlie) on the west and north side of Wichita. For a brief moment in time, there appeared to be some decent storm structure until the colder west winds hit, and the supercell raced northeast leaving behind some killer outflow. Overall, this chase was a bit disappointing. The storms failed to move off the boundary. This kept them rapidly training over the cold outflow surface temperatures and did not allow them to get eastward into fresher warm inflow. In the end, we saw some storms and some semi decent structure, but we never observed anything in the way of severe parameters as we chose to stay out of the hail cores.
Line of Storms
|Tail End of the Line|