Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Major Cold Front

Most of the day today was sunny and mild with high of 79 at 2:30pm. 3:30 though, the clouds were beginning to thicken. The leading edge of the rain and our transition to cooler (okay colder) weather was on its way. At 4:45pm, I went out side and saw this shelf cloud rolling in. This was the leading edge of the storms called an outflow boundary. The rain and storms behind this shelf cloud were pushing the air down toward the ground and then gusting out in front of the storm. You could feel the cooler air blowing in.

When the shelf cloud was nearly overhead, the winds picked up with great intensity. You could lean in to the wind and not fall forward. We had our strongest wind gust at this time... 45mph. I also began to notice an area of rotating clouds in the sky. I didn't imagine it was anything serious other than rotating clouds, but I posted a question and some pictures to the Apuzzo Weather Forum. Rich Apuzzo replied with this... "That is a shelf cloud, located in the forward flank downdraft, and the rotation you saw was a localized swirl, but nothing tornadic. The rough edges of the clouds tell you that you'e not seeing inflow or an updraft. It looks ominous, but it's nothing."

The major line of storms has now passed and we are left with just some rain. From the look of radar, we'll be in the rain for quite some time.