Author Topic: Thunderstorms, rain, cold and snow SA/VIC/NSW/Qld: 15 - 18 May 2008  (Read 45363 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Rodney Wallbridge

  • Multi-vortex F1
  • *
  • Posts: 71
  • Gender: Male
    • Red Bubble
Gyday all, well after the weekend snow chase with Michael Bath and Jason its certainly one of those setups which wasn't all that easy to follow and forcast the amount of snow that was to occur(7cm at Guyra for May is exceptional).Some events are clear cut Cold fronts with moisture and cold temps at 850hpa.The 17th and 18th May presented a setup which in my eyes,isn't frequent and quite amazing given the GFS data prior to it arriving on the Northern Tablelands of NSW.
Preceding the evening were pre frontal/trough storms which delivered 6mm of rain to Glen innes, which may have prevented the pre frontal winds from drying things out at the surface too much.Then allowing afternoon heating  to store more atmosphere moisture preceding the frontal cloud.Orographic effects in the locality of Guyra and Ben Lomond Range are very pronounced on our observations over the years I have been Snow chasing out there.Depending on moisture levels at 850hpa,700hpa may have forced saturation of the above passing cloudband due to up forcing to then commence Precip as snow .Orographic effect could produce turbulant eddies which could have helped bring the cold air lower to the 1300mtrs ASL?
Anyway I've stewed over the event and put forward a few ideas as to why this area gained a good bit of snow. Here are a few of my favourite photos in great company, what  a great trip!!

« Last Edit: 21 May 2008, 03:37:52 PM by Rodney Wallbridge »

Offline Peter J

  • Stove pipe F3
  • *
  • Posts: 419
  • Gender: Male
  • Lets go get em boys!
It is now official - Melb has now exceeded its May average for rainfall - best month of rain for 2008. also had 56mm in Mooroolbark over the weekend. Great for the gardens here - not sure what has transpired over the catchments - but much needed rainfall all the same!

Big Pete



  • Guest
Everyones photos are great!
Just had to share something funny, while in Guyra on Sunday, I stopped in the Caltex servo to have a nice hot coffee, and I ran into a poor guy that had been driving to Sydney from QLD. He was wearing shorts and thongs.... poor guy! he hadn't been expecting snow!
« Last Edit: 23 May 2008, 10:21:39 AM by Jimmy Deguara »

Offline Mike

  • Australian Severe Weather Moderators
  • Wedge tornado F5
  • *
  • Posts: 1,348
  • Gender: Male
  • Dry season here...boring!
Re: Thunderstorms, rain, cold and snow SA/VIC/NSW/Qld: 15 - 18 May 2008
« Reply #33 on: 17 June 2008, 04:40:03 AM »
Hi all and wonderful photos posted with the storm and snow events.  I have been in arctic Brisbane for the last four weeks (and glad to be back in Darwin!) and have some comments on viewing the storms on 17th May that crossed Brisbane onto the coast.

We were approaching Brisbane from the NW and the pilot had advised us all that there were showers at the airport and we had to stay up circulating for about 45, I'm thinking...aircraft don't stay up in the air just for showers - there must be thunderstorms! True to my guess (and a nice bluff by the pilot...) looking out the window i noticed flashes way up in these monstrous towers!  Thankfully the aircraft did several figure 8's and the storms were on my side of the aircraft.  I viewed a massive wall of TS's lining Moreton Bay and the city.  From this height it was just superb to see low based cloud but with this solid wall of storms so high up with star studded blackness as a backdrop and witnessing lightning flashing in the domes & towers at eye level.

As we drew nearer to the airport once the storms moved away we descended on approach and I had an eye level view at the cloud bases with CGs flanging along the coast!!!  My camera was up in the overhead locker...dumb idea!  But viewing lightning from this height, level with them was just sureal.  You could see where the strikes were grounding and the streamer action was just awesome.  You all have reported on the storms by the looks of things, so this is just a late addition to them.
Darwin, Northern Territory.
Lightning Research 2010/14

Offline Richary

  • Barrel tornado F4
  • *
  • Posts: 680
  • Gender: Male
Re: Thunderstorms, rain, cold and snow SA/VIC/NSW/Qld: 15 - 18 May 2008
« Reply #34 on: 17 June 2008, 04:02:44 PM »
Hi Mike

had a similar experience years ago (1992) when I was flying into Bangkok from Sydney late at night. Absolutely massive storm off to my side of the plane, we were still at 11km up and the top was well over us. And I could see the light from some poor little fishing boat underneath that was about to get hammered. The storm and the lightning was pretty impressive from that viewpoint.

Side issue, flying back from Paris to Singapore 2 years ago we ran into storms between India and Singapore. There was a little bit of lightning up ahead but not much. As soon as we flew into it there was continuous lightning around the plane and sparks appeared on the wings which would sit there for a few seconds before blinking out. Obviously the cloud was very highly charged, and the turbulence the plane caused triggered both the static charges on the wings as well as intra cloud lightning. Interesting experience!