Storm Highway by Dan Robinson
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                   Thursday, April 17, 2014 - 11:29AM CST

Storm Chasing & Photography forecast update for April 18 - 30

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We finally have something on the horizon to watch! Both the GFS and the Euro model agree on at least two upper troughs swinging through the center of the USA beginning late next week. As it's shown, the first potential storm chase day afforded by the first wave would be in the Wednesday-Friday time frame, followed by a several-day down period before the second wave arrives (pictured below as depicted by the GFS model).

Right now these systems are shown to have the classic synoptic-scale ingredients we need for tornadoes (upper support, instability, dryline, directional shear, breakable cap), but in reality we will not have any real confidence until we get within 3 or 4 days. The models are simply not that trustworthy this far in advance. To complicate matters, both the Euro and GFS want to keep the troughs a little too far to the north for my liking, which could lead to moisture issues - particularly for the first wave. Regardless, I like what's being shown enough to bump up the probabilities for the first 2014 Great Plains trip happening either late next week or next weekend.

Stay tuned - more updates will follow as new model data is available over the coming days.

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

2014 Plains Storm Expeditions - Probabilities as of April 17
April 18-220%
April 23-2740%
April 28-May 340%

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