CUmet

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  1. Looks like the surface center is passing just south of St. Croix right now, with surface obs reporting rapidly falling pressures, down to at least 1006 mb. This is likely the low cloud swirl that was evident on visible earlier today, before being obscured by adjacent convection.
  2. I would watch the stuff that's currently SSE of Childress, TX to see if a dominant cell will emerge and start to root itself on the boundary. It looks to be on the cool side of the boundary at the moment, but I think at some point during the next couple hours, the retreating boundary will meet up and overtake the cell. At that point, it would have access to excellent low-level shear amidst the locally-backed surface flow, not to mention the extreme instability.
  3. Yep that seems to be the case, and the 4km NAM also shows this feature. Assuming the ongoing MCS persists and progresses eastward, I'm willing to bet the boundary will be present, but where exactly this boundary ends up is a big question mark.
  4. While I doubt that the MCS will completely disrupt tomorrow's threat, I do think the resulting boundary will be an important focal point for the tornadic supercell threat. This is even more true considering the low-level jet isn't particularly strong tomorrow, so any additionally backed surface flow (via a thermal boundary) will enhance low-level shear and helicity. Given the potentially extreme (>4000 J/kg CAPE) instability and sufficient deep layer shear, any cells that ride that boundary could be trouble.
  5. Sorry, I meant more subtle over OK. What the NAM has is probably comparable to 5/24/11 with regard to this issue, but the GFS is much worse.
  6. I favor the OK target as well, given that the veer-back-veer issue will be less pronounced down there, as well as the likely more-isolated coverage and later initiation. The eye-popping instability/shear combo over a large area would normally scream significant tornado outbreak to me, but the aforementioned veer-back-veer issue gives me quite a bit of pause. The 5/24/11 event had some veer-back-veer concerns as well, though they were more subtle than this event if I recall correctly. Things got pretty messy in N OK/S KS on that day.
  7. FWIW, the HRRR is exploding the low-level shear/helicity near that retreating boundary as the low level jet ramps up during the next couple hours. If cells can manage to remain discrete, there could be a 2 hour window or so where we could see significant tornadoes drop.
  8. Everything that I thought I knew about violent tornadoes and death tolls has gone out the window this spring. It's been a long time since we've seen these kinds of death tolls, and I (like many others I imagine) was lulled into this idea that we wouldn't see this again. I've heard various sentiments in the past few weeks to the effect of "if you get a violent tornado going through a densely populated area, deaths are inevitable". While that may have some truth to it, I cannot help but feel that this is an insufficient answer. Like you Josh, I'm wondering how this happened, given how many violent tornadoes have rolled through significant population centers in the past few decades. Why weren't the Moore-OKC (1999) or Pleasant Grove (1998) tornadoes more deadly, for example?
  9. This was easily the most intense outbreak I have ever followed in my dozen or so years of outbreak-following experience. The staggering death toll and the magnitude of the devastation have been tragic and unexpected even to me. Although I suspected an event of historic magnitude would occur, this event has surpassed all of my expectations and deepest fears. If someone said yesterday that the death toll would be into the hundreds, even I (being one of the more bullish on this event) would've thought it was total alarmist hogwash. Shows you how naive I was... It was pretty apparent to me early on that either Tuesday or Wednesday would be the biggest day. The timing of the subtle waves embedded within the larger-scale trough determined which of these days would be bigger. I think it was on Monday when it really became apparent that although parameters were quite impressive on Tuesday aftn/evening, the main wave would eject out on Wednesday...sparking off a new secondary low. The screaming mid-upper level jet associated with the large-scale synoptic trough and the quality of the moisture over such a large area screamed "historic outbreak" to me. The one remaining question was the morning convection and how much that would hamper instability in the warm sector. It did actually accomplish this to some extent...much of the area north of the SE 1/3 of TN were largely spared from this outbreak. The RUC runs from the overnight hours before the event had no precip over this region, and had this verified in reality, the outbreak would've been incomprehensible. I have followed many big tornado outbreaks over the past dozen years, and this was the first one in which I was genuinely fearful in the day or two preceding the event. This one really scared me. I didn't say that directly in any of my posts, as I'd much rather stick to the cold hard analysis of the event and leave much of the drama and emotional side out of it. Probably some of you were able to read between the lines anyways. But in any case, starting on Monday and going into Tuesday evening/overnight, this felt different from the other outbreaks.
  10. Although the death toll will undoubtedly rise, I find the report of "hundreds of casualties" really hard to believe. I mean, we haven't had a 100+ fatality tornado in decades, and that was during the pre-tornado siren days.
  11. The cells firing along the prefrontal confluence line in central MS are likely to emerge as the main show over the next several hours. They are moving into a very unstable environment, and have access to the backed surface wind field.
  12. Cell currently WNW of Greenwood, MS is probably our first long-track tornado threat from the new cluster of development. Rotation appears to be tightening quickly. Greenwood sfc ob is at 81/72 right now, and this warm/moist air is surging northward in the wake of prior convection.
  13. lol it just had to be Broyles. Not criticizing by any means, as I would've done the same thing.
  14. Just woke up...unfortunate to hear some of the damage reports coming in from the overnight activity. There is tons of clearing south of that cluster in northern MS. The HRRR and RUC both have that cluster shifting quickly northeastward and weakening, with the atmosphere quickly destabilizing in its wake. Some of the forecast soundings later this afternoon across MS/AL/S TN are incredible and some of the most impressive I've ever seen from this part of the country...or anywhere else for that matter. My first thoughts this morning are that this is going to live up to the hype.
  15. Completely agree that the middle road is probably the best option given each of the model biases. The latest HRRR run that goes out to 17z probably represents my own thoughts pretty well.