2014 Mid-Spring Recap

It’s early May and 2014 has already rivaled 2013 in terms of below average number of tornadoes. Tornado outbreaks on April 27, 28, and 29 pushed the annual preliminary tornado count above 2013 up to the date of May 2nd. The large-scale pattern appears to be favorable for at least the next week or two for more severe weather events over the United States.  The forecast for a pattern conducive for severe weather becomes much more difficult as May progresses.  A significant ridge is likely to build and dominate the Western U.S. by late May and June.  Once in place this pattern will be difficult to change, but can be temporarily broken by MJO waves, similar to June of 2009.

Juston Drake and I have been roaming the Plains and Southeast documenting storms and tornadoes. Most of the events we’ve chased lacked deep low-level moisture making the storms high-based, outflow dominant and generally weak in nature.  The outbreaks of April 27 and 28 had deep Gulf of Mexico moisture available, which played a significant role in those deadly events.  Below are a few images we’ve captured so far this year:

Dramatic supercell west of Eldorado, OK Apr 20, 2014

Dramatic supercell west of Eldorado, OK Apr 20, 2014

Tornado-warned supercell over Memphis, TN Feb 20, 2014

Tornado-warned supercell over Memphis, TN Feb 20, 2014

Juston Drake photographs mesocyclone structure southwest of Columbus, MS Apr 28, 2014

Juston Drake photographs mesocyclone structure southwest of Columbus, MS Apr 28, 2014

Mammatus from MCS anvil near Hearne, TX Mar 28, 2014

Mammatus from MCS anvil near Hearne, TX Mar 28, 2014

RFD gust front structure near Eldorado, OK Apr 20, 2014

RFD gust front structure near Eldorado, OK Apr 20, 2014

Juston Drake films wall cloud before it produces Greenville, TX tornado Apr 3, 2014

Juston Drake films wall cloud before it produces Greenville, TX tornado Apr 3, 2014

Mesocyclone & wedge tornado approaching Louisville, MS Apr 28, 2014

Mesocyclone & wedge tornado approaching Louisville, MS Apr 28, 2014

Tornado-warned supercell near Holden, MO Mar 27, 2014

Tornado-warned supercell near Holden, MO Mar 27, 2014

Occluded mesocyclone & wedge tornado south of Columbus, MS Apr 28, 2014

Occluded mesocyclone & wedge tornado south of Columbus, MS Apr 28, 2014

Wedge-shaped tornado south of Columbus, MS Apr 28, 2014

Wedge-shaped tornado south of Columbus, MS Apr 28, 2014

Juston Drake photographs supercell west of Eldorado, OK Apr 20, 2014

Juston Drake photographs supercell west of Eldorado, OK Apr 20, 2014

Anvil Crawler lightning over Altus, OK Apr 26, 2014

Anvil Crawler lightning over Altus, OK Apr 26, 2014

MCS shelf cloud southeast of Pine Bluff, AR Apr 24, 2014

MCS shelf cloud southeast of Pine Bluff, AR Apr 24, 2014

High-based supercell thunderstorm north of Hollis, OK Apr 23, 2014

High-based supercell thunderstorm north of Hollis, OK Apr 23, 2014

Tornadic Supercell with wall cloud west of Eldorado, OK Apr 20, 2014

Tornadic Supercell with wall cloud west of Eldorado, OK Apr 20, 2014

Wall cloud near Princeton, TX Apr 3, 2014

Wall cloud near Princeton, TX Apr 3, 2014

Wall cloud shortly before producing wedge tornado southwest of Columbus, MS Apr 28, 2014

Wall cloud shortly before producing wedge tornado southwest of Columbus, MS Apr 28, 2014

High-based supercell at sunset west of Wichita Falls, TX Apr 23, 2014

High-based supercell at sunset west of Wichita Falls, TX Apr 23, 2014

 

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2 thoughts on “2014 Mid-Spring Recap

  1. I love your pictures. They are beautiful. My favorite picture is the RFD gust front structure from 4/20/14. I am so glad episodes of “Storm Riders” were aired Thursday night. I am a huge fan of the show and it’s taught me a lot. It has been an extremely helpful aid for when I chase. I love the educational aspect of the show. Are there going to be new episodes?
    It’s been a slow warm up here in western PA due to a percentage of the Great Lakes being covered in ice. It’s also been a slow start to my chase season due to lack of severe storms in western/central PA. There has been plenty of winter weather to document from November to March. Keep up the good work and stay safe.
    Laura

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