Storm Highway by Dan Robinson
Weather, photography and the open roadClick for an important message

May 11: Forecast update - Models flip-flop again

The new long-range model runs performed another one of their classic flip-flops today, and it was a major one. The western troughs that looked to take shape around the 23rd have been de-amplified and retrograded back west, essentially reinforcing the persistent east coast troughing and Plains ridging scenario. This makes at least the next two weeks, possibly even the entire month, look very unfavorable for severe weather in the Plains, and once again shifts the probabilites for our trip. It's par for the course for long-range models to change so much, and some would say it's even pointless to consult them this far in advance. They're probably right, but for storm observers like us who have to travel a great distance to and from Tornado Alley, they're all we have to plan with. So for now, we'll just have to live with the inconsistencies and do the best we can.

Based on the current outlook, this probability table charts the chance of our trip starting on a particular date:

2006 Weather Expedition - Departure Date Probability as of May 11
May 11-160%
May 17-2010%
May 21-2738%
May 28-June 452%
No trip5%

Event vehicle update: We have purchased a new digital weather station for the vehicle and have plans to install it by early next week, once we figure out the best way to mount all of the sensors and hardware. The weather station has a PC data link capability, so we'll likely be able to broadcast real-time observations to our web site from the vehicle. We also purchased an additional LCD monitor to be used by the second row passengers and will be installing it as soon as it arrives.

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