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                   Thursday, April 24, 2014 - 7:56AM CST

Chase forecast update for April 26 - May 7

By DAN ROBINSON
Editor/Photographer
25 Years of Storm Observing
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Some frustrating developments over the past 24 hours have thrown this system's potential into question. On Saturday, models develop much weaker instability, a stronger cap and delayed arrival of upper support - meaning that storms may not fire at all until well after dark. Sunday's setup is severely lacking in instability and is shown firing too early. These changes are bad enough that I have no choice but to reduce trip probabilities.

The wind profiles for both Saturday and Sunday remain excellent, however. If storms can fire on Saturday in Kansas/Okahoma, they will certainly be worth the trip. It may not be a question that can be answered until 5PM (storm initiation time) on that day, unfortunately - making it a gamble either way. Currently my plan is to go back to standby mode until Saturday morning, when a final departure decision will be made at the last possible moment. That's the best I can hope for, unless future model data can help resolve the question. Sunday's lack of instability also makes it doubtful to be a worthy of a drive to even western or central Missouri. It too may need to be evaluated on the morning of the day as to whether it will be deserving of the trip.

I expect to be observing *somewhere* over the next 5 to 7 days - there will be at least two local events here in St. Louis. Right now the situation on Saturday looks to be too big of a gamble, but we'll see if that changes.

The following table charts the probability of a Great Plains weather expedition happening for several indicated date ranges in the near future:

2014 Plains Storm Expeditions - Probabilities as of April 24
April 26-2755%
April 28-May 715%

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